Caesar’s Empire Salad

Yield: 6 Servings


  1. For the Parmesan crisps:
  2. 1 cup of Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  3. ¼ cup of fennel seeds
  4. 1- 200g pack of pancetta
  5. For the dressing
    1. 8 slices of bacon, chopped
    2. a splash of water
    3. 1 head of garlic, peeled
    4. 1- 50 g can of anchovies, not drained
    5. 4 Tbsp of Dijon mustard
    6. 1 ¼  cups of olive oil
    7. ¼  cup of bacon fat or more olive oil
    8. 1 Tbsp of Worcestershire
    9. 2 Tbsp of honey
    10. the juice & zest of 3 lemons
    11. 1 Tbsp of fish sauce
  6. For the salad:
    1. ½ cup of fresh parsley leaves
    2. 1 head of baby romaine lettuce leaves
    3. 1 bunch of fresh basil leaves
    4. 1 pint of ripe cherry tomatoes
    5. ½ a red onion, thinly sliced


  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. For the Parmesan crisps:
    1. Make the crisps by lining a baking tray with lightly oiled parchment or a non-stick silicone baking sheet.  Toss the cheese and fennel seeds together then form small circles on the tray. Bake until lightly golden and crisp, 8 to10 minutes. Cool.
  3. Place pancetta on a baking tray and crisp in the oven, 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. For the dressing:
    1. In your blender or food processor pulse the garlic, anchovies and salt to a paste. Add the remaining dressing ingredients along with the fish sauce and bacon fat. Process to a smooth dressing.
  5. For the salad:
    1. Add the whole basil leaves and parsley leaves to the romaine in a large salad bowl. Dress lightly. Toss in the cherry tomatoes, red onion, Parmesan crisps, reserved bacon and pancetta. Serve and share.