Sounds strange, but a light grilling brings out a deeper flavor from romaine lettuce. It looks very pretty on a large platter, and I often serve this to guests.
Grilled Caesar Salad--Serves 4
2 heads romaine lettuce
Cooking spray, like PAM
2 large garden tomatoes, chopped, or 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup shredded fresh Parmesan cheese
Whole wheat croutons or toasted walnuts(optional)
2 Tbs. rice wine or good favorite vinegar
1 tsp. dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, diced
1 anchovy or 1 tsp. anchovy paste
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs. chopped parsley
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 Tbs. light mayonnaise (this helps slightly thicken the dressing instead of more oil)
salt and pepper
1. Wash and dry romaine lettuce, keeping the heads intact. Using a sharp knife, slice each the long way through the middle. Try to keep the halves intact. Spray all sides with cooking spray.
2. Mix all the dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor, or by whisking by hand. Adjust vinegar, lemon juice or broth to suit your taste.
3. Place the romaine on a hot grill, and grill on both sides until lightly charred. Remove to a pretty platter or to individual salad plates. Top with the tomatoes and sprinkle on the cheese, then spoon on the dressing, and croutons or walnuts.