With over 100 company-owned and franchised restaurants throughout the Eastern and Midwestern United States, RARE Hospitality International Inc. has a fast-growing presence in the steakhouse segment of the dining industry. This relative newcomer to the market--at scarcely 15 years in business, compared to such 1960s-era chains as Ponderosa and Bonanza--RARE's irreverent style of "cowboy cuisine" shook up the segment. By 1996, the company's core chain of LongHorn Steakhouses numbered 81 units. Following its initial public offering in 1992, the company acquired the Bugaboo Creek Steak House chain and its smaller The Capital Grille group of pricey eateries. Founder George W. McKerrow, Jr. continued to serve the company as chairman through the mid-1990s.

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Grilled Caesar Salad


GRILLED CAESAR SALAD
Longhorn Steakhouse Recipe

Serves 4

2 hearts of Romaine lettuce, split into 4 halves
4 lemons (2 for dressing, 2 for grilling)

Caesar Dressing:
2 garlic cloves
juice from 2 lemons
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup olive oil

For the Caesar dressing, combine all the ingredients for dressing except oil and parmesan in blender or food processor. Pulse till mixed and then run while adding oil to emulsify. Stop and add parmesan cheese and pulse till dressing thickens. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

Wash the romaine in cold water. Pat dry. Use olive oil to coat both sides of the hearts of romaine and season with salt and pepper. Cut 2 lemons in half. Place the cut side of the hearts of romaine and lemon halves on a medium grill and grill 2 minutes or until grill marks appear. Turn over and grill 1 more minute Transfer to serving dish and drizzle some of the dressing over the lettuce. Garnish with grilled lemon halves and shaved parmesan.

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