Chicken Caesar Salad

Emily Gilmore would approve

This recipe reminded Hillary of a lesser known, but quintessential exchange between Emily Gilmore and Luke Danes of Gilmore Girls.  The scene’s setting is none other than Luke’s diner, of course:

Emily: How is your Caesar salad prepared?

Luke: I’d have to call Paul Newman and ask him

This dressing is not inspired by Mr. Newman’s and we think would definitely meet Emily’s standards in both safety and taste.

Ingredients – dressing:

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 5 anchovy fillets
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 TBS red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 egg – coddled
  • 5 TBS olive oil

Ingredients – chicken:

  • 1 – 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts (obvi)
  • 2 TBS salt **for brine!
  • 2 cups water **for brine!
  • Seasoning: salt, pepper, red pepper flakes (a dash), squeeze of lemon


  1. Brine Chicken: Dissolve 2 TBS salt in 2 cups water in a medium size container or big ziploc bag.  Submerge chicken breasts, cover or seal, and let sit for at least 30 minutes.  You can do this a couple hours ahead.  Refrigerate if brining over 30 minutes.  When finished brining, pat dry.
  2. Prep chicken: Cut into thin slices, moving from top to bottom.  Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
  3. Cook: Warm 1-2 TBS olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add chicken.  Cook for 5-6 minutes making sure to flip chicken pieces at least one.  Finish with a squeeze of lemon then set aside to cool.
  4. Dressing / anchovies + garlic: Dice up anchovies and garlic then chop and mash together, either in a mortar and pestle or on a cutting board with the edge and blade of your knife.*
  5. Dressing / acids: Transfer anchovy and garlic to a bowl and add vinegar, dijon, and lemon juice. Whisk.
  6. Dressing / coddle egg: Get some water boiling (just enough to cover an egg).  While waiting, with a pin poke a hole in the broad side of the egg.  Carefully drop the egg into the boiling water and let cook for 60-90 seconds.*  Remove from boiling water and run cold water over to cool.  Then crack the egg into bowl with mix.  Make sure to scrap out everything – all the white bits!  Whisk.
  7. Dressing / olive oil: Slowly add olive oil to the bowl, either vigorously whisking or blending.
  8. Chill dressing for 5 minutes.  It can keep for about 3 days.
  9. Combine! Combine dressing and chicken with romaine (or kale, though kale requires extra dressing, you’ll have enough), plenty of parm, cracked pepper, and croutons too if you like!

Details: Serves 2-4, add more chicken to feed extra people!

*Note 1: A mortar and pestle can be used to make dressing in its entirety.  You can also mix in a food processor, with a whisk, or hand blender.

*Note 2: In the printable recipe coddling time is written as 30 seconds – this is incorrect!  60-90 is recommended.

To print the recipe, click here: Chicken Caesar Salad

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