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Two-Olive Caesar Salad

  • SERVINGS: 10

"Everything that goes into a Caesar salad tastes good with olives—the grated Parmesan, the anchovies, the garlicky croutons," says Michael Mina. That's why he purees Niçoise olives into the dressing and dabs aromatic green-olive tapenade on the greens.

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  1. 4 cups stale baguette, cut into 3/4-inch cubes (4 ounces)
  2. 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  3. 3 garlic cloves—2 minced, 1 whole
  4. 1 tablespoon snipped chives
  5. 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  6. Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  7. 1/2 cup store-bought green-olive tapenade (4 ounces)
  8. 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  9. 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  10. 2 large eggs
  11. 1/4 cup pitted Niçoise olives (1 ounce)
  12. 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  13. 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  14. 3/4 cup canola oil
  15. 2 1/4 pounds romaine hearts (about 6), cut crosswise 1 inch thick
  16. 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (4 ounces)
  17. 6 ounces white anchovy fillets (see Note)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. In a large bowl, toss the baguette cubes with 1/2 cup of the olive oil, the minced garlic, chives and 1 tablespoon of the parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the cubes on a baking sheet and toast for about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the tapenade with the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of parsley. Add 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice and the lemon zest and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Add the eggs and cook until soft-boiled, about 4 minutes. Cool the eggs slightly under cold running water. Peel the eggs. Add the yolks to a blender along with the olives, the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, the garlic clove, Worcestershire sauce and mustard and blend. With the machine on, add the canola oil in a thin stream and blend until incorporated. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Toss the romaine with the croutons, 2/3 cup of the Parmesan, three-fourths of the anchovies and the dressing. Mound the salad on a platter and garnish with the remaining anchovies, 1/3 cup of Parmesan and dollops of the tapenade.
Make Ahead
The croutons can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. The dressing can be refrigerated overnight.
White anchovies, sold at specialty-food stores, are anchovy fillets that have been marinated in white vinegar.