Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe

This sun-dried tomato caesar salad is a vibrant twist on a classic dish. The tangy and sweet sun-dried tomatoes add a unique depth of flavor to the traditional Caesar dressing, while the homemade parmesan-crusted croutons give a delightful crunch. This is a salad that is sure to impress at your next gathering.

Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe
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Photos of Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe

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The main ingredients you may not always have at hand are sun-dried tomatoes and rustic bread. Sun-dried tomatoes are usually found in the canned vegetables aisle or the produce section of your local supermarket, and they give a deep, concentrated tomato flavor that is quite distinctive. The rustic bread for the croutons can be any type of hearty, crusty bread like a baguette or a country loaf. The staler the bread, the better the croutons.

Ingredients for Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

Olive oil: This is a staple in Mediterranean cuisine and is used in both the croutons and the dressing. It adds a rich, fruity flavor.

Parmesan: A hard, salty Italian cheese that adds a lot of flavor to the salad, croutons, and the dressing.

Rustic bread: This is the base for the croutons. It gives a hearty and satisfying crunch.

Sun-dried tomatoes: These will be blended into the dressing. They add a tangy, intense tomato flavor.

Lemon juice: Adds freshness and acidity to the dressing to balance out the richness of the other ingredients.

Garlic: An essential flavor base for the dressing.

Romaine: The main component of the salad. It's crispy and has a mild flavor that carries the dressing well.

One reader, Casar Ogrady says:

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This sun-dried tomato caesar salad recipe is a game-changer! The sun-dried tomato dressing adds a burst of flavor, and the parmesan-crusted croutons are a delightful crunch. It's a refreshing twist on the classic caesar salad that's sure to impress. I highly recommend trying it out!

Casar Ogrady

Key Techniques for Crafting Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

How to make parmesan-crusted croutons: Mix olive oil, parmesan, and salt in a large mixing bowl until a paste is formed. Add cubed bread and mix well until all the bread is coated. Bake at 400 degrees F for 10-15 minutes until golden brown and crisp.

How to make sun-dried tomato dressing: Combine sun-dried tomatoes, parmesan, lemon juice, water, garlic, and a pinch of salt in a food processor. Process for 1 minute, then drizzle in the olive oil while blending for an additional 10 seconds. Adjust seasoning with salt and black pepper to taste.

How to assemble caesar salad: Drizzle the sun-dried tomato dressing over halved romaine or toss with chopped romaine. Finish with parmesan-crusted croutons and a sprinkle of parmesan and sun-dried tomatoes. Serve immediately.

How To Make Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

Enjoy this vegetarian twist to the classic Caesar salad. Crisp lettuce is served with a dressing of sun-dried tomatoes and grated parmesan.

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

For Parmesan-crusted Croutons:

  • 3tbspolive oil
  • ½cupParmesangrated
  • ¼tspsalt
  • 2cupsrustic bread¾-inch cubes

For Sun-dried Tomato Dressing:

  • ¼cupsun-dried tomatoesroughly chopped
  • ½cupParmesangrated
  • 2tbsplemon juicefreshly squeezed
  • 2tbspwater
  • 1garlic cloveroughly chopped
  • sea saltpinch
  • ½cupextra-virgin olive oil
  • black pepperfreshly ground, to taste

For Caesar Salad:

  • 2smallheads of romainehalved, chopped
  • Parmesanadditional sprinkle
  • sun-dried tomatoesadditional sprinkle

Instructions

Croutons:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with a rack in the top of the oven.

  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix the olive oil, Parmesan and salt in a large mixing bowl until a paste is formed.

  3. Add the cubed bread and mix well with a spatula, until all the bread is coated. Turn the bread onto the prepared baking sheet and arrange in a single layer.

  4. Bake for 10 minutes, then stir and put the croutons back into the oven for up to 5 more minutes or until they are golden brown and crisp.

Dressing:

  1. Combine the sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan, lemon juice, water, garlic and a pinch of salt in a food processor or high-powered blender.

  2. Process for 1 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides if necessary.

  3. While running the machine, drizzle in the olive oil and blend for 10 more seconds.

  4. Taste and add more salt and some black pepper, if desired. Set aside.

Assemble:

  1. Drizzle the dressing over your halved romaine or toss with your chopped romaine.

  2. Finish with croutons and a sprinkle of Parmesan and sun-dried tomatoes. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

 

1. You could also use oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, rinsed, and patted dry. If using tough, dried tomatoes, soak them in boiling water until they’re pliable, then pat them dry and continue with the recipe.

 

Nutrition

  • Calories: 581.35kcal
  • Fat: 48.24g
  • Saturated Fat: 11.51g
  • Trans Fat: 0.01g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 30.05g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 4.85g
  • Carbohydrates: 21.98g
  • Fiber: 6.45g
  • Sugar: 5.75g
  • Protein: 18.98g
  • Cholesterol: 25.28mg
  • Sodium: 812.15mg
  • Calcium: 555.10mg
  • Potassium: 790.26mg
  • Iron: 3.92mg
  • Vitamin A: 1102.23µg
  • Vitamin C: 13.94mg

Helpful Technique for Enhancing Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

To ensure your parmesan-crusted croutons are evenly coated and crispy, make sure to toss them thoroughly in the olive oil and parmesan mixture before baking. This will help the parmesan adhere to the bread and create a deliciously crunchy texture. Additionally, spreading them out in a single layer on the baking sheet will allow for even heat distribution and prevent the croutons from becoming soggy.

Time-Saving Tips for Preparing This Salad Recipe

Prep ahead: Chop and store the romaine lettuce and sun-dried tomatoes in advance to save time when assembling the salad.

Use store-bought croutons: If you're short on time, consider using pre-made parmesan croutons instead of making them from scratch.

Multi-task: While the croutons are baking, prepare the sun-dried tomato dressing to maximize efficiency in the kitchen.

Invest in a food processor: Using a food processor to make the dressing can significantly reduce the time and effort required for blending and emulsifying the ingredients.

Batch preparation: Consider making a larger quantity of the sun-dried tomato dressing and storing it in the refrigerator for future use, saving time on subsequent salad preparations.

Substitute Ingredients For Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe

  • parmesan - Substitute with grated pecorino: Pecorino has a similar salty and tangy flavor to parmesan, making it a suitable substitute for the parmesan in the recipe.

  • rustic bread - Substitute with sourdough bread: Sourdough bread has a tangy flavor and a sturdy texture, which can work well as a substitute for rustic bread in the croutons.

  • sun-dried tomatoes - Substitute with roasted red peppers: Roasted red peppers can provide a similar sweet and smoky flavor to the dish, adding depth and richness to the dressing.

  • romaine - Substitute with kale: Kale can offer a hearty and robust texture, adding a different dimension to the salad while still providing a satisfying crunch.

Essential Kitchen Tools for Making Caesar Salad

  • Oven: An essential appliance for baking and roasting, providing consistent heat for cooking.
  • Baking sheet: A flat, metal sheet used for baking and roasting foods in the oven.
  • Parchment paper: A non-stick paper used for lining baking sheets and pans to prevent food from sticking.
  • Mixing bowl: Used for combining ingredients and mixing them thoroughly.
  • Spatula: A kitchen tool with a broad, flat, flexible blade used for mixing, spreading, and turning.
  • Food processor: A versatile kitchen appliance used for chopping, blending, and pureeing ingredients.

Interesting Fact About Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

The Caesar salad is named after its creator, Caesar Cardini, an Italian immigrant who operated restaurants in Mexico and the United States. The salad was invented in 1924 in Tijuana, Mexico, and quickly gained popularity. Despite its Italian-sounding name, the Caesar salad is actually a Mexican creation. It was originally made with romaine lettuce, garlic, croutons, and a dressing made from olive oil, egg, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and Parmesan cheese. Over time, variations of the salad have been created, including the sun-dried tomato Caesar salad recipe.

Is Making Caesar Salad at Home Cost-Effective?

This sun-dried tomato caesar salad recipe is fairly cost-effective for a household. The ingredients, such as olive oil, parmesan, and romaine lettuce, are commonly found and reasonably priced. The use of simple, accessible ingredients makes it budget-friendly. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $15-$20. The overall verdict rating for this recipe is 8/10. It offers a delightful blend of flavors and textures, making it a satisfying and economical choice for a family meal.

Is This Caesar Salad Recipe Healthy or Unhealthy?

This sun-dried tomato Caesar salad recipe has both healthy and unhealthy elements. Let's break it down:

Healthy aspects:

  • Romaine lettuce is a nutritious base, providing fiber, vitamins, and minerals
  • Sun-dried tomatoes offer a concentrated source of antioxidants and vitamin C
  • Olive oil is a healthy fat that can help reduce inflammation and improve heart health
  • Garlic has antimicrobial properties and may boost the immune system

Unhealthy aspects:

  • The recipe is high in calories due to the generous use of olive oil and Parmesan cheese
  • Parmesan cheese is high in saturated fat and sodium, which can contribute to heart disease and high blood pressure when consumed in excess
  • The croutons, while delicious, are made with refined bread and add extra calories and carbohydrates to the dish

To make this salad healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Reduce the amount of Parmesan cheese in the dressing and as a topping, or opt for a lower-fat cheese like feta or goat cheese
  • Use whole-grain bread for the croutons to increase the fiber content and nutritional value
  • Limit the portion size of the croutons or omit them altogether for a lower-calorie option
  • Add more vegetables to the salad, such as cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, or bell peppers, to increase the nutrient density and fiber content
  • Use a mix of romaine and darker leafy greens like spinach or kale for added vitamins and minerals
  • Experiment with using Greek yogurt in place of some of the olive oil in the dressing to reduce the calorie and fat content while maintaining creaminess

Editor's Opinion on This Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

This sun-dried tomato Caesar salad recipe offers a delightful twist on the classic Caesar salad. The parmesan-crusted croutons add a delicious crunch, while the sun-dried tomato dressing brings a rich and tangy flavor. The combination of romaine, parmesan, and sun-dried tomatoes creates a harmonious blend of textures and tastes. It's a refreshing and satisfying dish that is perfect for a light lunch or as a side to a main course. The recipe's simplicity and bold flavors make it a standout choice for any occasion.

Enhance Your Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of roasted garlic, perfect for pairing with the sun-dried tomato caesar salad.
Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest: Tender asparagus spears grilled to perfection and finished with a sprinkle of fresh lemon zest, a delightful accompaniment to the sun-dried tomato caesar salad.
Balsamic Glazed Brussels Sprouts: Crisp Brussels sprouts coated in a sweet and tangy balsamic glaze, a delicious side dish to serve alongside the sun-dried tomato caesar salad.

Similar Salad Recipes to Try

Grilled Vegetable Skewers: Marinate the vegetables in a tangy balsamic vinaigrette before grilling for a delicious and healthy side dish.
Braised Beef Stew: Slow-cook tender beef with hearty vegetables and savory broth for a comforting and satisfying meal.
Mango Coconut Popsicles: Blend ripe mangoes with creamy coconut milk and a touch of honey, then freeze into refreshing popsicles for a tropical treat.
Creamy Tomato Basil Soup: Simmer ripe tomatoes with aromatic basil and cream for a velvety smooth and comforting soup that's perfect for any time of year.

Appetizer and Dessert Pairings for Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad

Appetizers:
Stuffed Mushrooms: Create a savory and indulgent appetizer by stuffing mushrooms with a flavorful mixture of herbs, cheese, and breadcrumbs. Bake until golden and serve hot for a delicious start to any meal.
Caprese Skewers: Impress your guests with these elegant and refreshing skewers featuring cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil. Drizzle with balsamic glaze for a burst of sweet and tangy flavor.
Desserts:
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and velvety chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder for an extra touch of decadence.
Berry Tart: Create a beautiful and vibrant berry tart, filled with a luscious pastry cream and topped with an assortment of fresh berries for a burst of sweet and tangy flavors.

Why trust this Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad Recipe:

This recipe offers a delightful twist on the classic Caesar salad, featuring sun-dried tomatoes and a flavorful parmesan-crusted croutons. The dressing, made with sun-dried tomatoes, parmesan, and a hint of garlic, adds a rich and tangy dimension to the dish. The use of high-quality ingredients such as extra-virgin olive oil and fresh romaine ensures a vibrant and satisfying salad experience. Trust in the combination of traditional Caesar elements with the added depth of sun-dried tomatoes to elevate your salad game.

Share your thoughts on this delicious Sun-Dried Tomato Caesar Salad recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum and let us know if you have any tips or variations to make it even better!
FAQ:
Can I use store-bought croutons instead of making my own?
Yes, you can use store-bought croutons if you're short on time. However, making your own parmesan-crusted croutons adds a delicious homemade touch to the salad.
Can I make the sun-dried tomato dressing in advance?
Absolutely! The sun-dried tomato dressing can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just give it a good shake or stir before using it.
Can I substitute the romaine lettuce with a different type of lettuce?
While romaine lettuce is traditional for Caesar salad, you can certainly use other types of lettuce like kale, spinach, or mixed greens if you prefer.
Can I adjust the amount of garlic in the dressing?
Of course! Feel free to adjust the amount of garlic in the dressing to suit your taste preferences. You can start with a smaller amount and add more if you want a stronger garlic flavor.
Can I add protein to this salad to make it a complete meal?
Absolutely! Grilled chicken, shrimp, or even tofu can be added to this salad to make it more substantial and turn it into a complete and satisfying meal.

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