2021 Tahini Caesar


The 90's are calling and they want their Caesar salad back.
I think the first thing I was really good at (in the kitchen) was making a Caesar salad.

Friends and family would always request I bring my Caesar salad to parties and holidays, it was so good.

My secret was mayo instead of a raw egg yolk, balsamic vinegar and always anchovies.

I haven't made it in forever....it is very 1999.

Well, it's 2021 and I found a new version that I love even better!

It has tahini (sesame paste) instead of the mayo or eggs to thicken.

It's an adaptation of Eden Grinshpan's recipe from her Mediterranean cookbook Eating Out Loud.

I have made it a few times now, and have added my own twists.

I always cut down on the garlic to one clove in dressings, since raw garlic can be very harsh......and I omitted the mustard, but go ahead and add a tsp of dijon if you must.

Eden caramelizes her nuts in the oven, I do mine in a nonstick skillet, so much easier.

I added sliced avocado and a 7 minute egg to make this a main course lunch salad.

I am truly in love with this salad.

Here is how I made it:

Tahini Caesar Salad:

1 package of romaine lettuce leaves, washed
2 anchovies, minced
1 garlic clove, shaved on a microplane (so it is pulp)
2 tbsp of good quality tahini (I use Ambrosia from Israel)
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
juice of a half a lemon
1/4-1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pecorino or parmesan cheese
sea salt & pepper

Candied Walnuts:

1/3 cup of walnuts
1/4 cup of honey or maple syrup


sliced avocado
7 minute egg 
thinly sliced radishes

Make the dressing by whisking all the ingredients (not the lettuce) in bowl.  Whisk in the cheese last.    You don't have to be exact with the measurements.

Make the nuts:  in a nonstick skillet, pour the honey over the whole walnuts and simmer this mixture about 6 minutes, stirring around with a silicone spatula, until the syrup is bubbling and the nuts are browning.   Most of the liquid will be absorbed.

Pour the nuts out onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and let the nuts cool.  They will harden, like candy brittle.
Once cool and hard, chop the nuts into small pieces with a chef's knife.

If you are using the egg, it's best to serve it warm, while the yolk is still jammy, so cook the 7 minute egg just before serving (same with the avocado).

Plate the lettuce leaves, leaving them whole on a platter (this is finger food!).

Cut the egg into pieces and scatter about.  Same with the radish slices and avocado (if using).

Drizzle this yummy dressing over the platter, and scatter with the chopped candied nuts.

I had some of the dressing leftover, and I drizzled it on my avocado toast the next morning.

Welcome 2021!