While The Grill Is On, Try This Grilled Romaine Recipe
When we think of Labor Day Weekend, images of family barbecues, beach vacations, and some much-needed R&R come to mind. And while a lot of LDW grilling options might not be so clean, you can still make sure to get your greens in with this Grilled Romaine recipe. This salad might look simple and easy to make (perfect to whip up on this lazy, long weekend), but its nutrient-dense ingredients definitely pack a punch. The smoke from the grill gives this dish a smoky flavor while the nutritional yeast adds 9 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber.
This recipe will be a hit this Labor Day; we're sure of it. The romaine will look crisp and beautiful as it chars on the grill, and the flavors are just as vibrant. What more could you need for summer's final hurrah?
Grilled Romaine With Caesar-ish Vinaigrette
You might think grilling lettuce will completely wilt it, but no, it doesn't. It beautifully chars the outer leaves while the inner core remains crisp (and even somewhat chilled if you refrigerate the lettuce before grilling). Caesar salad dressing is traditionally made by emulsifying raw egg yolks with olive oil, garlic, and anchovy, but for grilled lettuce, a lighter egg-free vinaigrette is a better match. I don't add the anchovy, but if you want to make this a quadruple umami bomb, use a fork to mash up a bottled anchovy fillet and mix it into the garlic, shallot, and mustard in Step 2.
- Vegetable oil, for greasing the grill grates
- 2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 1 medium shallot, minced
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 heads of romaine lettuce hearts, halved lengthwise
- 4 slices (¼- to ½-inch thick) good-quality bread
- 1 wedge Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for shaving
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
- Heat a charcoal or gas grill to high according to the manufacturer's instructions (you can also use a grill pan over high heat). Brush the hot grill grates with a grill brush. Fold a paper towel into quarters and dip it into the vegetable oil, then use long barbecue tongs to grease the grill grates with the oil-saturated towel.
- Mix together the garlic, shallot, nutritional yeast, mustard, ¾ teaspoon of salt, and pepper. Whisk in the lemon juice and then slowly whisk in 3 tablespoons of olive oil until the dressing is creamy and emulsified.
- Brush the cut sides of the romaine lettuce halves with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of salt. Drizzle both sides of each bread slice with some olive oil, then season 1 side of each piece with a pinch of salt. Place the bread and lettuce (cut-side down) on the grill and cook until the lettuce is charred around the edges and grill-marked on one side (do not turn it), and the bread is toasted and grill-marked on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Transfer the bread to a platter and set the lettuce charred-side up on top of the bread. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the lettuce and use a vegetable peeler to shave ribbons of the cheese over the top. Sprinkle with chives and serve immediately.
Recipe excerpted from Umami Bomb by Raquel Pelzel. Copyright © 2019 by Workman Publishing. All rights reserved.
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