14 June 2011

Cheaty Caesar Dressing & Quick Cantaloupe Sorbet

~  Menu  ~

Caesar Salad with Frazzled Prosciutto
Glass of Red
Cantaloupe and Lime Sorbet

I have a forgetful friend who having once tasted my Caesar Dressing asked for the recipe every few weeks for several years, bless her.  I think she may have nailed it now as I haven’t had to remind her for quite a while.

The second half of the romaine lettuce I cooked the other day and a couple of slices of prosciutto in the fridge and I’m laughing.  I haven’t had Caesar Salad since I was last in the islands where it is a staple, due to the American influx, and almost compulsory on a menu in one form or another.

I think this is a quasi cheat – I do start out making a proper Caesar dressing but then I suddenly deviate and add a good old dollop of ready made mayonnaise at the end.  I find this makes for a creamier consistency which clings to the lettuce even more deliciously than the standard stuff AND there is no raw egg involved which is great if you want to keep a batch for a while or are of an infirm inclination.

Caesar Dressing for Cheats …

1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 oz shredded parmesan
2-3 anchovies
juice of half a lemon
dash of Worcestershire sauce
good grind of black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp mayonnaise

~   In a food processor or liquidiser blend together all the ingredients down to the olive oil.
~   When smooth add the mayonnaise and give it a quick whizz.
~   Taste and season but I doubt it will need anything – almost definitely not salt.

Once you’ve got this in your fridge making a great Caesar Salad is a doddle.  All you need is some salad leaves (crunchy are best, romaine/cos is traditional) and a handful of croutons .   To make a meal of it top with grilled chicken or crispy bacon or, as I did, a little frazzled prosciutto (just tear up some Parma ham and fry till crisp in a little olive oil).


Caesar Dressing can be used in several other dishes – try it as a dressing on potato salad (maybe with a little more mayonnaise), as a sauce in a chicken sandwich or wrap, or drizzle over baked fish.  Mash some into baked potato or use as a dipping sauce for crudités. 

The other day my friend Carol had quite a lot of leftover melon and, like me, she doesn’t like waste so she had an inspiration …

… give it to me!  I left it in the fridge for a while, forgetting about it for large stretches of time, till yesterday when I realised that I was in a use it or lose it situation.  I made a sudden sorbet.  This is what I did, it seems to have worked.

Cantaloupe & Lime Sorbet

350g coarsely chopped cantaloupe melon
90g caster sugar
zest and juice of 1 lime
~   Purée the lot all together, bung in a plastic container and freeze.
~   Every hour or two take the sorbet out of the freezer and mash it with a fork (or in my case a bad tempered potato masher ~ he likes to make an appearance now and then).


 That’s it – if you don’t mash it you’ll have a granita which is OK too.


I had a smidgen of this as a palate cleanser, as one does, after my salad but I think it would also be good with a spoonful of ginger wine poured over it OR mixed in with it before freezing which would make it more softly scoopable. 

The Hounds of Geevor

! often see these chaps when I’m wandering round Padstow so thought I’d give them a mention. 


Geevor in West Penwith was one of the last deep tin mines in Cornwall and it closed in 1991.   Talented recyclist David Kemp used the discarded miners’ wellies to create a pack of hounds; the Hounds of Geevor (cannus stannus geevoritii) who, rumour has it, wander the cliffs of Cornwall looking for a proper job.  (That is a Cornish joke which may not be understood by most people – sorry!)
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3 comments:

debs said...

love this blog!cesar salad is my very fave and th sorbet looks very pretty, the welies are very interesting!

marla said...

Such a beautiful Caesar salad! Cookin' Canuck and I would love if you linked up this recipe & any 2 other side dishes in this weeks Get Grillin' event posted on both of our blogs.

Island Vittles said...

that is one delicious looking salad -- and quick too! Theresa

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