I’ve been meaning to grill romaine since the early summer, when I spotted it in Bon Appetit mag. Why hadn’t I attempted grilling romaine yet?
Thinking out of the box with food is the key ingredient to staying on a healthy diet. Romaine, typically, is blah. It’s got a lovely crunch, but it’s not as highly touted as spinach or kale, because it’s not as rich in vitamins and other nutrients. Plus, it doesn’t have as much flavor.
But, how much can you really eat spinach and kale? Romaine should be loved too!
Now, by grilling romaine, we infuse the lettuce with healthy fats from olive oil and top it with deliciousness, and we’ve transformed boring ‘ole romaine into a magnificent salad that tastes and looks gourmet.
There are several parts to this dish that make it spectacular. Let’s start with the spiralized onions (I mean, can you blame me?) By spiralizing the onions, they are longer and therefore, more substantial. Typically, when you chop onions, they’re sliced and unexciting. Who likes slicing onions anyway?
Then, there’s the Greek yogurt balsamic dressing. I actually made a huge batch of this and saved some in the refrigerator and used it for a few salads throughout the week. If nothing else, make this dressing and ditch the recipe – it’s going to be one of your go-tos, I promise! It’s tangy, balsamic-y, and high in healthy protein. Typically, creamy balsamics are made using mayonnaise (ick!) This uses Greek yogurt instead. If you like a little more tang, add in another teaspoon of Dijon mustard!
Now, the blue cheese gives a robust flavor, another source of protein and a creaminess to this salad that completes the dish. However, if you’re a blue cheese hater, you can ditch the cheese or substitute in some shaved parmesan cheese or even use feta.
Let’s just say that when you dig your fork and knife into this “salad” (which, by the way – how cool is the presentation?), your bite will have so many textures, flavors and warmth that you won’t even realize you’re eating mundane romaine. Mundane romaine – it rhymes!
Warmed lettuce also has an elegant taste and fixes that “I don’t want to eat another salad” issue. I’ve been there.
Have you ever tried grilled romaine? Or grilled lettuces in general?
Nutritional Information & Recipe
Grilled Romaine with Caramelized Onion Noodles, Blue Cheese and Greek Yogurt Balsamic Dressing
- 2 romaine lettuce heads rinsed, ends chopped off and cut in half lengthwise
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 onion peeled, Blade A
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
- For the dressing:
- ¼ cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the grill or grill pan to medium-high. Place half the olive oil in a bowl and while the grill is heating, brush the cut sides of the romaine lettuce with the olive oil. Season the cut side generously with pepper and lightly with salt.
- Once grill pan is heated, place the sliced side down and let cook for about 5 minutes. Periodically, put medium pressure with a spatula on top to ensure the lettuce cooks. Repeat until all lettuce halves are cooked. Set aside.
- After two lettuce halves have cooked, in another skillet, add in the rest of the olive oil. Once oil heats, add in the onion noodles and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until caramelized and lightly browned.
- Top the grilled lettuce with onions and blue cheese and drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette.