El torito southwestern caesar salad

Yield: 6 Servings

Measure Ingredient
\N 2 corn tortillas
\N 1 red bell pepper -- roasted

: Oil

1 lg romaine lettuce -- rinse and : spin dry

: salad dressing -- see : further

½ c grated Cotija cheese

: julienned

½ c pumpkin seeds (pepitas) -- : roasted

: **CILANTRO-PEPITA DRESSING 1 md Anaheim chili -- roasted

: peeled and seeded

3 TB pumpkin seeds (pepitas) -- : roasted

1 lg clove garlic

⅛ ts freshly ground black pepper ½ ts salt

¾ c oil

2 TB red wine vinegar

3 TB grated Cotija cheese

1 sm bunch cilantro -- stemmed

¾ c mayonnaise

2 TB water

Delicious! It contains several Mexican ingredients such as pumpkin seeds (pepitas) and Cotija cheese, which are available in Mexican markets and some supermarkets. --Susan Watts, Palm Dessert Update: Oct 1996 the restaurant is making roasted red pepper tortillas. The salad had fresh red and green bell pepper dice that has been marinating in the dressing. COTIJA, also known as ANEJO, is a salty, crumbly white cheese, similar to feta in appearance. But cotija is hard enough to put into a blender. Romano or washed and dried feta are good substitutes. Cotija is hard white cheese that can be grated. Other substitutes are Cacique, manchego, panela, or Parmesan. The cheese must have character.)patH( MAKE THE DRESSING: Place chili, pepitas, garlic, pepper, salt, oil, vinegar and Cotija cheese in blender or food processor. Blend about 10 seconds, then add cilantro, bit by bit,until smoothly blended.

Place mayonnaise and water in large stainless-steel bowl and whisk until smooth. Add blended chili mixture and mix thoroughly. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate; dressing may be stored up to 3 days. Makes about 3 cups.

MAKE THE SALAD: Cut tortillas into matchstick-size strips. Heat oil for deep frying and add tortilla strips. Cook a few seconds until crisp. Remove and drain. Set aside.

Tear romaine lettuce into bite-size pieces. Place greens on 6 salad plates and ladle Cilantro-Pepita Dressing on each salad. Sprinkle each dish with Cotija cheese and tortilla strips. Arrange 4 red pepper strips like spokes on top of each salad and garnish with pepitas.

Cook and Tell recipe swap column, Riverside Press-Enterprise 1 Au 96.

Pat H. McRecipe.

Recipe By : El Torito Restaurant, California From: Path <phannema@...> Date: Mon, 21 Oct 1996 12:34:53

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