Hearts of Caesar Salad

SERVES: 4

This nutty take on Caesar dressing eliminates the need to make mayonnaise by swapping the egg yolk for walnuts which make the dressing thick, creamy, and nutty. In my experience, this salad is best served very cold so if you’ve got the time, throw that jar of hearts of palm in the fridge along with the endive to keep them chilled until you’re ready to dress.

Active Time: 20 Mins

Total Time: 45 mins

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Produce

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 pound endive
  • 1 lemon

Pantry

  • 1 cup raw walnuts
  • 4 oil packed anchovies
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, plus more
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 cup sliced hearts of palm (from a can or jar), about 4 ounces

Dairy

  • Parmigiano reggiano, for grating

1. Toast the nuts:

  • Preheat the oven to 350. Place 1 cup raw walnuts on a small rimmed baking sheet and toast until deeply golden brown all the way through (crack into one to be sure it's well toasted!), 10-12 minutes. Let cool to room temperature before proceeding. If your nuts are hot when blended the dressing is likely to split! Be patient.

2. make the walnut caesar dressing:

  • In the base of a food processor, mini-prep, or magic bullet, combine 1 garlic clove, half of the walnuts and 4 oil-packed anchovies. Blitz until finely chopped.
  • Add 2 tablespoons ice-cold water, 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard and 1 ice cube. Process until creamy.
  • Add ¼ cup vegetable oil, 3 tablespoons olive oil,  and process again, scraping down the sides as needed. It should look like a thickly creamy Caesar dressing–if it’s too thick, add a little more water to thin it out. Season with salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper–it will need more salt than you think (we just added water!). Taste and add more white wine vinegar as needed until things start tasting really great.

3. Dress and serve:

  • Trim the ends of 1 lb of endive. Peel away the outer leaves, continuing to trim the end as you go (this will allow you to continue to peel away the leaves) and add them to a large bowl.
  • Thinly slice enough hearts of palm to measure 1 cup sliced; add them to the bowl as well.
  • Drizzle the dressing over the endive, season with salt and pepper and use your fingers to gently toss and rub to ensure all the little nooks and crannies are dressed.
  • Use your hands to crush the remaining toasted walnuts as you add them to the bowl and toss once or twice to allow them to coat the endive.
  • Transfer to a serving platter in a few scoopfuls, finely grating some parmigiano reggiano and a few swipes of lemon zest over the salad in between each addition, and piling the salad high. This way, you’ll get some cheese and zest in all parts of the salad as you plate it. Squeeze the juice of the lemon over the salad. Finish with more parm, lemon zest, black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil and serve cold! Cold is key!

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