Grilled Broccoli Caesar Salad
This non-traditional dish borrows ideas from three different countries. The Caesar salad was invented in Mexico, the migas (toasted seasoned bread) hails from Spain and the dressing has a dollop of Japanese miso in it. I elevated a humble vegetable with a symphony of textures and umami, and people have loved it at my restaurant. We go through at least 12 cases of broccoli a week at Fox & the Knife, if not more, and it is by far one of the top dishes at the restaurant.
Now this dish is a staple on my family's Thanksgiving table, plus it's a delicious way to get everyone to eat their veggies!
Technique tips: Layer the migas throughout the salad to create a perfect bite every time. You can also make the dressing with a whisk. If you don't have a grill, roast the broccoli instead.
Special equipment: Blender or immersion blender.
Swap option: Eliminate the fish sauce to make it vegetarian. You can also roast the broccoli instead of grilling it. If you are short on time, use store-bought croutons instead of making migas.
· 2 tablespoons butter
· 2 garlic cloves, sliced
· 1 tablespoon sweet smoked pimentón (paprika)
· 2 cups cubed sourdough bread
· Zest of 1 lemon
· 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
· 2 large egg yolks
· 1 tablespoon colatura (aged Italian fish sauce, but you can substitute Asian fish sauce if you prefer)
· 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
· 1 tablespoon white miso
· 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
· 1 garlic clove, sliced
· 1 cup canola oil
· 2 heads broccoli, florets and stems roughly chopped into bite-sized pieces
· 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
· Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
· Juice and zest of 1 lemon
· 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
· Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for finishing the dish
1. Preheat oven to 325°F. In a medium frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the sliced garlic and smoked paprika, then add the cubed bread and using another pan, press the bread down into the pan to absorb all of the fat. Season with salt and pepper. Add the lemon zest and toast in the pan until the bread starts to brown.
2. Transfer the bread to a parchment-lined baking sheet and splash with the sherry vinegar. Bake, stirring every 10 minutes, until golden brown and dry, about 30 to 35 minutes.
The Caesar dressing
3. In a blender, combine the egg yolks with the colatura, Dijon, miso, vinegar, black pepper and garlic. Blend on high speed, slowly drizzling in canola oil. Season to taste with salt. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.
4. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. In a large bowl, toss the broccoli florets with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Grill the florets for 3 minutes per side, until just cooked through. If you don’t have a grill, or don't want to use one, you can also roast the broccoli in the oven at 400°F until the tips become a little charred. 5. Transfer the grilled broccoli to a bowl bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Add the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Toss with the raw sliced broccoli stems and taste again for seasoning. 6. Divide the broccoli between four bowls, top with the migas and dress each portion with 2 tablespoons of Caesar dressing. Top with lemon zest, Parmigiano-Reggiano and chopped parsley before serving.