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Asparagus puts a healthier spin on Caesar salad

The most popular salad is the Caesar, which is also considered one of the more unhealthier salads due to its higher fat content.

Of course, I would have to say that it is likely healthier than a good Mid-Western Marshmallow Salad.

Caesar takes its name not from Julius Caesar (who actually did eat asparagus) but from Italian-American Chef Caesar Cardini only a mere 100 years ago.

By replacing the bacon with asparagus and the romaine with radicchio, we end up with a salad that is not only healthier, but converts into a more fancy-schmancy, higher-end salad with a fabulous presentation.

Asparagus does originally come from Europe and was brought to and cultivated in the Americas by Dutch settlers. It is one of the first crops that we harvest here each spring, so it seemed fitting to use it in a recipe as we’re going into May.

By quickly blanching a green vegetable before adding to a salad, it takes a little of the crunch out of it.

I like to build this salad individually on each plate and lightly drizzle the dressing over. It not only gives a fancy and unique presentation, but doesn’t drown the salad as a lot of Caesars are typically served.

If you don’t use all the ingredients in one sitting then you’ll have a-spare-I-guess.

Asparagus-Caesar

Recipe by Chef Duff
Servings

4

servings

If you don’t use all the ingredients in one sitting then you’ll have a-spare-I-guess.

Ingredients

  • 1 head radicchio

  • 1 bundle asparagus

  • 1 loaf baguette

  • Dressing:
  • 1 cup low-fat mayonnaise

  • 1 cup fresh grated Parmesan

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed

  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon

  • 1 tsp. Dijon

  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire

  • Salt

  • Pepper

Directions

  • Cut radicchio in quarters brush with a little olive oil and sear on hot grill.
  • Shave off woody ends of asparagus and blanch in boiling water for about 30 seconds and refresh in ice water.
  • Combine dressing ingredients together with mayo reserving half of the cheese.
  • Arrange salad by placing whole leaves down, arranging asparagus on top, drizzle with dressing and top with shaved parmesan.
  • Croutons can be made with thin slices of baguette that can simple be toasted plain and arranged around the perimeter.

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