August 1, 2023. Around the World in 80 Ways, eating very, very well all the Way. 80 recipes based on traditional healthy cuisines around the globe. From places and times that never heard of diabetes, overweight/obesity and cardiovascular disease epidemics. All these times and places have two things in common: no highly processed foods and very low daily glycemic loads. Like the classic Caesar salad, created in the 1920s in San Diego, Tijuana or Hollywood depending upon which version of the creation myth you choose. Wherever it happened, it predates bottled industrial salad dressing by decades.
With love from Hollywood
The season of Great Greens continues and summer temperatures are arriving before summer. When I saw this vibrantly fresh and crisp romaine lettuce in my CSA farm share, I knew it was time for a cool salad. With lettuce so flavorful it’ll stand up to any dressing.
Romaine is the classic leafy green choice for a Caesar salad, but I realized I never made one before. Sure, I make that terrific Grilled Caesar Salad that’s not really a Caesar salad. So I quickly turned to the great Mark Bittman’s comprehensively great How To Cook Everything. For this easy, get-it-done-in-3-minutes-flat recipe.
1 clove of garlic
1 egg yolk
5 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
6 tablespoons of olive oil
1/2-cup of Parmigiano cheese, freshly grated
Classic but optional: 2 anchovies, chopped
8 – 12 cups of lettuce, washed & dried, torn or shredded
Rub, whisk, toss
Slice the garlic clove in half and rub the sliced surfaces all over the inside of your salad bowl. Be thorough. Take those extra 15 seconds to get it right.
Now put the egg yolk, lemon juice and olive oil in the bowl. Whisk thoroughly – shouldn’t take more than 30 seconds. Then whisk in the grated cheese. And the anchovies if you’re not an anchovy hater.
Almost done. Add the lettuce and toss for a minute. Eat immediately. Or even Better on a hot summer day: cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to eat. Then serve it crisp and cool. Rich and creamy, but creamless. Bright from the lemon. Fragrant from the garlic. Slightly salty from the cheese. Saltier from the anchovies. Summer’s easiest classic.
The World’s Greatest Hits
No deprivation diet here. Just a focus on better, low glycemic calories. Because all calories are not created equal. Nothing weird. Just the most loved meals around. The tasty, satisfying stuff. Bon voyage. Bon appétit.
Less than $1 for a side salad, less than $2 for a main course salad that’s summer’s easiest classic. Crisp and cool. Rich and creamy, but creamless. Bright. Fragrant.
$3.25 to add McDonald’s Apple & Walnut Salad to their Side Salad with Caesar dressing to make a side salad smaller than yours. 4 times more expensive than your super-fresh organic side salad for a small one from unknown sources.
Let’s Do The Math
30 minutes to walk off your big, bright, rich and delicious classic Caesar Salad’s 150 calories (they’re all in the dressing). The good calories. Zero Glycemic Load. Just like the greens.
One hour plus 25 minutes to walk off McDonald’s 420 calories. You can only guess what’s in their dressing.