Monday, March 2, 2009

All Hail Caesar ... Scampi Caesar Salad Sandwich!

Friends, bloggers, foodies, lend me your ears! No, it’s not the ides of March, but it is nearing springtime, and my taste buds and tummy are crying out for lighter foods. Today’s recipe is, as Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar said, “a dish fit for the gods”. The gods of good eats, that is.

Do you care for that garlicky shrimp wonder-of-wonders called Scampi? What are your thoughts on Caesar Salads? I like both, and having both on hand led to today’s alliteration creation called Scampi Caesar Salad Sandwich.Years ago, when I worked in downtown Portland, my friends and I would meet for lunch at this little pub type of place and order Shrimp Caesar Salads. The salads were served in a hollowed out bread bowl that had been toasted. While there was WAY too much bread for one person to consume, I really liked the chewy texture the bread provided instead of crunchy croutons. To be honest, I’m not a huge crouton fan. Too often, they are just jaw bone cracking hard and over seasoned. I do like homemade ones, especially if they’ve soaked up a vinaigrette ... which renders them chewy not crunchy. Anyway ... fast forward to today, at lunch I wanted to recreate that chewy goodness of the Caesar Salad bowl without using an entire loaf of bread. Solution? Lightly toasted ciabatta sandwiches.This sandwich is outstanding. Really. It’s now one of my favorites. You’ve got the magnificent crunch of the Romaine lettuce, the tang of the Caesar dressing, the garlic greatness of the shrimp, the nutty toastiness of the parmesan, and the glorious chewiness of the bread. It’s filling, but not heavy. I loved it. Perhaps you will, too!


Shrimp Scampi (about 6 per sandwich) – Warm. I used left over. Any recipe will do. If you need one, let me know. Mine is simple to make, and tastes terrific.
Mini loaves ciabatta bread or 2 slices Italian or French bread per person.
Shredded Parmesan cheese
Romaine lettuce, chopped or torn into large pieces
Caesar salad dressing (I purchase mine.)

Heat your oven to 400. Split open the ciabatta, and very lightly butter the inside. Spoon about ½ to 1 teaspoon of parmesan on each piece. Place on an oven sheet, and lightly toast for about 5 minutes. That’s all.Don’t over toast it. We don’t want crunchy bread ... it’ll be too hard to eat!

In a large bowl, toss the lettuce with the salad dressing. Use a light hand when spooning on the dressing; a little goes a long way. Next, layer a good amount of salad onto the toasted ciabatta and place about six pieces of shrimp on top. Serve open face, or top with other piece of bread, slice on an angle, and serve.Hello, beautiful! Just look at how good this is! These would be super-dee-duper with grilled chicken or smoked salmon instead of shrimp. Perhaps if Caesar had fed his countrymen these sandwiches, “Et tu, Brute”, could have been him asking his friend if he wanted seconds!And you, would you care for one of these lovelies?


nottryingforaboy said...

Yes, I would like one.

I'd also like the shrimp scampi recipe, but no hurry. Just blog it the next time you make it. ;)

Tatersmama said...

Oh yes please!
These look so gooooood that they make the veggie hot dog I was planning for lunch, pale in comparison... *sob*

Cheryl said...

man oh man those look good Paula, can I come live with you? I have been living on cereal and bagels, LOL

Cathy said...

Oh my gosh, that is too scrumptuous for words. I want one.

Proud Italian Cook said...

Paula, Send one my way, would you. Please!!

Sara said...

What a unique idea! I am definitely going to try this one, I just love shrimp scampi.

Bellini Valli said...

My lunch was not bad bit it doesn't compare with this:D

noble pig said...

So awesome! I make Ina's Caesar Salad Club sandwich so I'm sure this is awesome!

Mediterranean kiwi said...

great sandwich - i love the way you have let the cheese melt onto the bread befor eyou stuff it

OhioMom said...

I crave lighter foods in warmer weather also .. and this sandwich is perfect!

Katherine Aucoin said...

I'd like one too please. That is total heaven on bread. Try them as a wrap too - another version of complete YUM!

Marjie said...

How do you have leftover shrimp? Seriously? If I cook 5 pounds, they'll eat 6. If I cook 10 pounds, that's gone. I'm not real sure what leftovers look like, and I've never seen leftover shrimp. And yes, I'd love this sandwich!

Peter M said...

If I want a lighter lunch, I add grilled chicken or like you, shrimp into the mix.

Shrimp is Caesar salad is da bomb!

Grace said...

well, this is a unique idea for a sandwich, yet i'm surprised i haven't seen it before. nicely done, and again with the clever title. i love it. :)

Spryte said...

Wow!! My daughter would LOVE this!!

Pam said...

You are so smart! What an amazing sandwich - great photos.

Lo said...

Ooh. I'll totally take one. Too delicious... and that definitely falls on the lighter side of things compared to some of what we've been eating. So, I could USE one :)

Pam said...

Yes, I totally want one! Now!

Dawn said...

I would LOVE one or two of these please, thank you!
I love the taste of caesar dressing on so many things.

Lynda said...

Yes, I want one now! They look so good!

Jenna from KaTom said...

I love Shrimp Scampi..and I enjoy a good Caesar Salad as well so this seems perfect!

Jan said...

Wow, that looks mouth wateringly good! You wouldn't consider adopting me would you?

Bridgett said...

Ok, let's make a deal, Paula. I will move and become your neighbor and make you all sorts of cakes, if you will make this for me on a weekly basis/ How does that sound? You have such wonderful recipes that aren't fussy. Love this!

The Blonde Duck said...

About the pie blog where I talked about being teased--it's true. And it was a lot worse. One girl used to pour chips and soda in my hair on the bus and my "friends" used to get up and walk off when I sat down at the lunch table. It's probably why I'm so focused on happy subjects now!

Anonymous said...

Um, yes please!!! What a perfect sandwich Paula!

Manggy said...

Oh, do count me in :) I love shrimp in any way shape or form! Also, you have reminded me of the simple joys of having a lunch group. Sigh :(

MaryBeth said...

Caesar salad is my all time favorite and I have never had it with shrimp, which I also simply love. To put it all onto a sammie is a wonderful idea. I will will be right over for one....

Paula said...

Hi All! Hope you are having a great week!

Nottryingforaboy: I'll be making scampi during Lent, so I'll post about it. By the way, for some reason, I can't route to your blog by clicking on your name. I have to actually enter the address. No biggee ... just thought I'd mention it. Hope your little girl is having a good day. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers.

Tatersmama: I don't think I've ever had a veggie hot dog!

Cheryl: Come on over ... and bring your quiche with you! :-)

Cathy: Thanks, it's a great sammie.

Proud Italian: No problemo!

Sara: It's fun to eat!

Bellini Valli: Your food always looks so awesome!

Noble Pig: I did a google search as soon as I saw your comment. That sammie looks awesome!

Med Kiwi: I love the nutty flavor of toasted parmesan!

Ohio Mom: I'm on a salad kick lately!

Katherine: A wrap is a brilliant idea! I'll try that!

Marjie: I was sneaky! I put a big scoop of them in a container, and hid it in the fridge! :-)

Peter: Chicken ceasars are so good, too. But my heart belongs to shrimp ceasars! *sigh*

Grace: I bet some restaurant somewhere has it!

Spryte: Thanks for stopping by! It's a keeper of a sammie!

Pam: Thanks! It tasted as good as it looks!

Lo: You know, it really is light, but filling at the same time. YUM!

Pam: Come on over, and I'll make you one. Say ... does Patchouli like shrimp treats?

Dawn: I enjoy the tang of the dressing, too!

Lynda: They are so good!

Jenna: Thanks for stopping by! It's a great combo of the two dishes!

Jan: Sure ... If you wouldn't mind an Italian mama!

Bridgett: You've got a deal! Yeah! (and thanks!)

Duckie: You most definitely have persevered! You know that all of cyber blogland adores you and stands in your corner! You can come sit at my lunch table everyday!

Aggie: It's a wonderful lunch sammie! (I've got Aggie on the brain these days as I'm always wondering ... how would Aggie make this more healthy?)

Mark: What city are you in these days? Come on over and we'll have lunch!

MaryBeth: Oh, Caesar's with shrimp are amazing ... and addicting!

Jan said...

Right - now I don't want what I'm already cooking for dinner tonight (6pm here) I want that sandwich instead!!
Looks amazing.

Kerstin said...

Yum - looks light, but filling. Love your blog name!