Toothsome Images / RECIPE: Radicchio Ceasar Salad

02.27.2014

The perfect seasonal starter to a holiday meal, our vibrant radicchio ceasar salad from The Christmas Table with Diane Morgan is definitely a statement piece.  This recipe features colorful red and white radicchio leaves, slightly bitter in flavor, with a rich, creamy dressing and crunchy herbed croutons.  Craving more?  Check out our whole collection of dynamic salads and starters on our stock food photography site ToothsomeImages.com.

Radicchio Salad

Radicchio Ceasar Salad

{Serves 8}

3 heads radicchio (about 1 1/2 pounds total weight), cored

2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese, preferably parmigiano-reggiano

Freshly ground pepper

 

Dressing

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1 very fresh large egg yolk

2 teaspoons anchovy paste

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

 

Croutons

2 cups (3/4 inch) fresh bread cubes, cut from an artisanal white loaf with the crusts removed

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage

 

Separate the leaves from the radicchio heads, tear them into large bite-size pieces, and soak in a bowl of cold water for 1 hour, so they become crisp.  Drain and dry in a salad spinner.  Spread the radicchio on a large cotton cloth dish towel (not terry cloth) or on several sheets of paper towels.  Roll up like a jelly roll and place in a large plastic bag.  Refrigerate until ready to use.  (This can be done up to 2 days in advance.)

To make the dressing, in a blender, combine the olive oil, vinegar, mayonnaise, egg yolk, anchovy paste, garlic, sugar, and pepper and process until emulsified.  Alternatively, whisk together the ingredients in a medium bowl until emulsified.  Transfer to a jar with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate until ready to use.  (The dressing can be made up to 1 day in advance.)

To make the croutons, position a rack in the center of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Arrange the bread cubes in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until golden brown on all sides, about 8 minutes.  Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.  In a small saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter.  Add the rosemary and sage and saute until the herbs are fragrant and lightly toasted, about 2 minutes.  Pour the butter mixture over the croutons and toss to coat.  Set aside until ready to use.  (The croutons can be made up to 1 day in advance and stored in an airtight container at room temperature.)

When ready to serve, place the radicchio in a large salad bowl.  Give the dressing a last-minute shake and pour over the salad.  Toss gently until the leaves are well coated.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese, add the croutons and a few grinds of pepper.  Toss gently to combine and serve immediately.

Radicchio

About the photographer: EJ Armstrong is the chief art and cookie addict at the Black Building. She has thirty years of experience in the visual world, making her the lead nagger, design junky and advice columnist. You can find her on Instagram @avisualist or see more of her photography here.


Posted By: Scott
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