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If You're Going To Make A Caesar Salad, Make It Ina Garten's Kale & Broccoli Version

Ina Garten
Chef & New York Times bestselling author
By Ina Garten
Chef & New York Times bestselling author
Ina Garten is a New York Times bestselling author and the James Beard Award-winning host of Barefoot Contessa, which has won three Emmy Awards and airs on the Food Network.
Image by Quentin Bacon / Contributor
October 6, 2020

When it comes to iconic salads, the Caesar salad is a prime example—and when it comes to chefs and cookbook authors, Ina Garten is an icon in her own right, too.

Her most recent cookbook, Modern Comfort Food, releases today. In it, Garten shares all the recipes she cooks for comfort, including this updated version of a Caesar salad. "Food has an almost magical ability to comfort us, soothe us, and bring us together in so many ways," she writes—and in 2020, comfort cooking is certainly something that resonates.

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The key component to making the salad a perfect comfort food is her homemade Caesar dressing, which goes back to the classic recipe with anchovy fillets and fresh eggs. "This is my classic Caesar salad dressing," she writes "It's important that all the ingredients be at room temperature, particularly the eggs. The dressing will last for a week in the refrigerator."

The other updates? Homemade croutons (which are a great way to use your leftover sourdough): "This is a great way to use up leftover bread and adds a nice crunch to all kinds of soups and salads," writes Garten, "They are so much fresher and more flavorful than packaged croutons."

And of course, the base of kale and broccoli to replace the traditional romaine lettuce is one we can't argue with: Leafy greens and cruciferous veggies are just an added bonus in this perfect salad.

Broccoli & Kale Salad

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 cups broccoli florets, stems removed (2 bunches)
  • 1 bunch baby kale
  • Caesar Salad Dressing (recipe follows)
  • 1 cup Toasted Croutons (recipe follows)
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)
  • ¼ cup grated Italian Parmesan cheese
  • 6 eggs
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Method

  1. Bring a large pot of water with 1 tablespoon of salt to a boil and fill a bowl with ice water. Add the broccoli to the boiling water and cook for exactly 4 minutes. Remove the broccoli with a slotted spoon and transfer to the bowl of ice water. When cool, drain well and transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Remove and discard any hard ribs from the kale, stack the leaves on top of each other, and thinly julienne them crosswise. Add to the bowl with the broccoli.
  3. Add enough Caesar Dressing to moisten the broccoli and kale, and toss well. Add the croutons, lemon juice, and Parmesan. Divide the salad among six dinner plates.
  4. Meanwhile, fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil. With a spoon, carefully lower each of the eggs into the boiling water and lower the heat until the water is at a low simmer. (You don't want the eggs knocking around in the pot or they will crack.) Cook the eggs for 6½ minutes exactly, remove them from the saucepan, run them under cool water, and peel (see note). Place one egg on each salad, cut it in half, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and serve immediately.

Note: To peel an egg, wrap the ends on a board to crack the shell. Roll the middle of the egg on the board with the heel of your hand to crackle the shell, then peel carefully. Fresh eggs are harder to peel than less fresh ones.

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Caesar Salad Dressing

Makes 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
  • 10 anchovy fillets
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, at room temperature (2 to 3 lemons)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1½ cups good mild olive oil
  • ½ cup freshly grated Italian Parmesan cheese
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Method

  1. Place the egg yolks, mustard, garlic, anchovies, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and process until smooth.
  2. With the food processor running, slowly pour the olive oil through the feed tube (as if you were making mayonnaise) and process until thick. Add the Parmesan and pulse 3 times to combine.

Toasted Croutons

Makes 1 cup croutons

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Ingredients

  • Good olive oil, such as Olio Santo
  • 2½ ounces country white bread, crusts removed and ½-inch diced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small (8-inch) sauté pan and heat over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking.
  2. Add the bread and sauté, tossing occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes, until evenly browned. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
Recipe courtesy of Modern Comfort Food. Copyright © 2020 by Ina Garten. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

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Ina Garten
Ina Garten
Chef & New York Times bestselling author

Ina Garten is a New York Times bestselling author and the James Beard Award-winning host of Barefoot Contessa, which has won three Emmy Awards and airs on the Food Network. She has written twelve cookbooks, including Modern Comfort Food which was released this fall. Garten lives in East Hampton, New York, with her husband, Jeffrey.