If you live in Seattle, you have heard of Canlis. In full disclosure, I have never been to Canlis. Maybe when I grow up. But the folks went many times and no matter what entrée mom had, she always came home talking about the Caesar Salad, and the decor and the view and who you might see and the incredible service. You get the drift. And then, for joy, for joy, the Seattle Times printed the salad recipe in the paper. Mom could now make Caesar Salad whenever she wanted. She was in heaven.
This was also the era of the dinner party and the folks had several each year. I remember them well; I had to polish the sterling and iron the napkins. Mom believed in courses and a proper salad course was the Canlis Caesar. I doubt if a month went by without her serving this salad either formally or informally.
True, this is a great Caesar, but it can’t merely be due to its origins, at the one time most expensive restaurant in town. There must be more. I think it’s the dressing. This is the only recipe I know of that calls for a coddled egg. If you are worried about the effect of raw egg, I wouldn’t make this salad. I have no substitute. A coddled egg is a 1 minute immersion into boiling water and that’s it. When you crack it open, it looks only mildly milky, just enough to emulsify nicely with the oil. I’m offering no guarantees only a really good Caesar that Marjorie loved.
2 heads Romaine lettuce, torn (I now use Baby Romaine, they are so tender)
Tomatoes, I prefer cherry or sungold
Onion slices, Walla Walla Sweet if available
1 cup croutons (I usually make my own, squares of bread fried in olive oil, with S & P)
1 pound bacon, sliced and fried hard
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
¾ cup oil, neutral flavor like Canola
2 cloves minced garlic
Juice of 1 lemon
1 coddled egg (pour boiling water over egg and let sit 1 minute before cracking open)
Mix dressing and pour over salad ingredients. Serve immediately or keep everything separate until you are ready to eat.
* from the Recipe Box:
This was mom’s go to fancy green salad. This became quite the family favorite, especially to Paul.
and remember what Prince sang: Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called Life! Big kiss, Lynn