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Salads, Vegetarian

Kale Caesar

Kale Caesar
Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times

Fall is the harvest season, right? That's especially true when it comes to cookbooks, which every year arrive in a seasonal flood that puts apples and pears to shame. By some counts, as many as three-fourths of all cookbooks in ... Read more

Total time: 30 minutes | Serves 4 to 6

Caesar dressing

  • 2 lemons
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 6 olive oil-packed anchovy fillets
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Salt
  • 2 cups olive oil

Step 1To make the dressing, grate the zest from 1 lemon. Cut both lemons in half. Place the garlic, anchovies and lemon zest in a mortar and pound with a pestle to make a thick paste. Add the egg yolk, a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon juice and stir thoroughly to combine. Continuing to stir, pour in 1/2 cup of the oil, drop by drop. The mixture should look smooth and creamy, a sign that you are building a stable emulsion. Continuing to stir, begin adding the oil in a slow stream. The dressing should thicken. Periodically stop pouring in the oil and add a squeeze of lemon. Taste the dressing and add more salt and lemon juice to taste. Add water, a small spoonful at a time, stirring to thin dressing to the consistency of heavy cream. This makes about 2 cups dressing. You may not use all the dressing for the salad; the remainder will keep, covered and refrigerated, for up to 2 days.


  • 3 slices day-old bread, each 1 inch thick, torn into 1 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence (optional)

Step 1To make the croutons, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, toss the torn bread with the olive oil and a pinch of salt. If you are using the herbs, add them too. Spread the bread evenly on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown and crisp, about 15 minutes. Midway through the baking time, redistribute the croutons if they are coloring unevenly.

Salad assembly

  • 2 pounds black kale, center stems removed, and torn into bite-sized pieces
  • Croutons
  • Caesar dressing
  • 2/3 cup grated or shaved aged Parmesan cheese

Step 1In a large bowl, combine the kale and croutons. Pour dressing over the top and toss to coat (you may not use all the dressing). Add the Parmesan, toss again and serve.

Note: Adapted from "Tartine Bread" by Chad Robertson.


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