When I heard my favourite plant-based restaurant was closing my heart sank as they had a creamy yet acidic plant-based-gluten-and-soy-free caesar salad. Maybe it was my grumbling belly from withdrawal mixed with my creative spark, however soon after their doors closed – I began working on my own creamy ceasar dressing. It took a bit of time and some tasting spoon cleaning but I finally made a dressing of my garlic-filled dreams.
I also had been working on a crispy gluten-free batter for a number of months. I don’t recall just how many combinations of flour it took to get the batter just right but I do remember, it was a left over small can of ginger ale from a party the week prior which turned out to be the missing piece. I grabbed some artichokes hearts from the pantry and tossed those into the batter before frying until crispy.
*endosisters: If possible avoid canned and buy artichoke hearts in glass containers or buy fresh.
Caesar Salad with Fried Artichoke Hearts
- 1 -2 heads romaine lettuce
- 1/4 shallot
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 avocado
- 1/8 cup soy free vegan mayo
- 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 lime
Fried Artichoke Hearts Batter Ingredients:
- 1 can artichoke hearts in water
- 2 cups all purpose gluten free flour
- 1/8 cup corn starch
- 354 ml can ginger ale
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tbsp canola oil
- Peel and remove the pit of the avocado. Scoop out the insides and place into a food processor along with the garlic cloves, shallot, mayo, lemon and lime.
- Turn on the food processor to medium-high and continue until desired texture.
- Remove from food processor. As this is a thicker dressing, you will not need a lot for the salad. If you want a thinner dressing – add in more of the mayo.
- In another bowl, combine the dry ingredients for the artichoke batter in a bowl and whisk and blended evenly before pouring in the ginger ale. Mix until smooth.
- Meanwhile, in a dutch oven heat the oil to 375F degrees.
- Rinse the artichoke hearts and squeeze out the excess water. Pat dry and then dredge into the wet mixture.
- Make sure the oil is to temperature before carefully dropping in each artichoke heart.
- After 8-10 minutes or once golden brown, remove from oil and place on a cooling rack or a paper towel lined plate.
- As the fried artichokes hearts are cooling, wash, dry and tear up the heads of romaine lettuce and toss into a bowl.
- Pour in some of the dressing, mix until the lettuce is covered evenly and toss in the fried artichoke hearts. Serve and enjoy!
PRO TIP: Try satuéeing the garlic and shallots first before adding them to the food processor.