Grilled Santa Fe Caesar
- Sep 09, 2021
- David Wilhelm
There is probably no more iconic a dish that I have created over the years than my grilled version of the classic Caesar, but my version is anything but classic. When I was enamored with the contemporary Southwestern cuisine craze back in the 80’s, I was constantly taking traditional dishes and infusing them with Mexican ingredients and flavors.
Having been a fan of Caesar salad for years, I thought this dish would lend itself perfectly to a bold update. I started with the dressing where I made a roasted Poblano chile, cilantro and toasted pumpkinseed pesto and then blended the pesto into the classic Caesar dressing.
Next I decided to do a take off on the classic Italian vegetable side dish of grilled radicchio by cutting the lettuce in half, brushing it with my dressing and grilling it briefly on both sides. To me a good Caesar salad needs to have plenty of dressing so I drizzle a little more of the dressing on the top.
Then I looked at what other Mexican components I could add so I topped the salad with sliced avocado, grilled corn, freshly made pico de gallo salsa and finally chile roasted pumpkinseeds. Alone or with the addition of grilled steak, chicken or shrimp this makes a delicious and unique salad. Give it a try next time you’ve got your grilled fired up… I’m pretty sure you will love it.