what happen in athens – stays in athens; alexander & caesar!

There is always a story behind my food.
During the Athen-time did I have dinner at least twice per week at newly opened Hilton Hotel – in their restaurant “Alexander”, I think today it’s called “Milos” – it was in the basement of the hotel with a beautiful stair case down from the bar. Before every dinner I stopped in bar and had a White Russian – haven’t drank it again after leaving Athens– what happen in Athens, stays in Athens.

There I met Alexander … a beautiful salad that was made in front me at the table. This was before I met “Caesar”. Don’t remember when or where I was introduced to “Caesar” – he didn’t make the same impact on me as “Alexander” did.

Where so fascinated when they prepared the salad, starting of with the garlic and egg yolks, then the anchovy’s and the oil. First the waiter took the garlic glove and dressed the inside of the wooden bowl with it. Then the egg yolk and anchovy’s. Must have eaten that salad nearly 100 times.

 So what is the original Caesar Salad. – don’t ask me. Have eaten so many different versions through the years, still “Alexander” must have been close to perfect. Only one time after Athens – the salad have been prepared in front of me and that was at The Yacht Club in Victoria, BC.

It’s without any doubts the world most famous salad and most sold salad too.
We had it on and off the menu – mostly on – because so soon we took it off – the guests start asking for it. We served with chicken, grilled cured ham, salmon or king prawns through the years. Still the plain is the most popular.

So hear comes my/our version – even if we used a ready made dressing – we made a fantastic salad. Think they are still serving it – StenaPlus (business class).

Caesar Salad, 4 person
2 garlic cloves
4 anchovy fillets
5ml (1tsp) salt
5ml (1tsp) freshly ground black pepper
15ml (1tbsp) freshly squeezed lemon juice
5ml (1tsp) Worcestershire sauce
2.5 ml (1/5 tsp) Dijon mustard
1 large egg yolk
100ml extra virgin olive oil
1 head of romaine lettuces
2 head of baby gem lettuces
300ml grated parmesan cheese – 100ml to be mixed with the lettuces.
200ml shaved parmesan as garnish.
4 slices of old white toast bread. – frozen Italian mixed herbs and olive oil

Dressing: –
Place the garlic, anchovy fillets and salt in a wooden bowl. Use 2 dinner forks to mash everything to a paste. Use one fork for whisk in the pepper, lemon juice. Worcestershire sauce, mustard and egg yolk – whisk everything together – add parmesan.

Bread croutons; – we use just old white and brown toast bread – cut the edges of – then turned them in olive oil mixed with frozen Italian herb. Then into the oven (180C) until turned golden – stir around once in a while. We stored them in airtight container. 2 days life span.

The salad – we use two kinds of lettuces to get a some texture to the salad and the baby gem lettuce will lift the salad and it looks much bigger then it’s.
Make sure the lettuces are properly washed – preferable the night before – shaken free of all excess water – stored in air tight container, that will makes the leaves so much crispier.

We mixed a small amount of grated parmesan in with the lettuces – arrange the lettuces on indv. deep large plates or bowls. Scatter the croutons on top and – Drizzle the dressing over and finish off with shaved parmesan on top and freshly ground black pepper.

 To get the best shavings of Parmesan cheese – we used a Swedish domestic kitchen tool – called “osthyvel” – we eat a lot of hard cheese in Sweden and we need to slice them, that’s when we use the “osthyvel”. I use it for thinly shavings of cucumber & carrots for other salads (shave them length-ways)  – to be find abroad – at IKEA (of course).

 Here you have a fantastic – Caesar Salad … καλή σας όρεξη !

Photos provided by; panoramio.com / katiekieffer.com / exploracation.blogspot.com /me / redskapsboden.se /nb-otc.com

4 thoughts on “what happen in athens – stays in athens; alexander & caesar!

  1. Beautiful. You are a treasure chest of memories.
    My introduction was to Caesar and the recipe was in a in a 1960’s copy of Betty Crocker and damn near identical to yours. I love anchovies.

    • Yes, Wendy – have loads of memories .. some stronger then others. There are 1000’s reciepes on Caesar dressing – and they all come from somewhere. Think I got mine from a cookery book – while working in Canada. In Sweden at that time we didn’t know what a Caesar Salad was. Not very keen on anchovies – too salty for my taste, but for Caesar dressing there is no way to get around it.

  2. Hmmm…I love Caesar’s salad especially with lots of anchovies. Strange as it may sound, I sometimes eat the anchovies with rice. 😉

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