You cannot buy a Mexican Cesar salad dressing as good as the one served in El Torito Restaurants, but here is a version you can make at home that is spot on! For a full salad, be sure to use crisp Romaine lettuce and top it with this dressing, pepita seeds, and toasted tortilla strips.
Makes one pint.
- 1 medium Anaheim pepper
- 3 Tbsp pepitas
- 1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 Tbsp Cotija cheese, grated (or Parmesan)
- 1 small bunch cilantro, stemmed
- 3/4 c vegetable oil
- 3/4 c mayonnaise
- 2 Tbsp water
- Roast the Anaheim pepper by putting it on an oiled pan under the broiler and turning frequently as it chars. (If you have a gas cooktop, you can roast it without oil, by turning it over a low flame.) Once it is blackened all over, seal it in a small paper bag and allow it to stand ten minutes, before splitting it in half and removing the seeds. Remove the skin too, unless you like the charred flavor (as I do).
- Place the Anaheim pepper, pepitas, garlic, pepper, salt, vinegar, and cheese in blender or food processor for 30 seconds to mince all ingredients.
- Add cilantro bit by bit until blended, then slowly add oil and blend for 1-2 minutes until there are no large bits in the dressing.
- Place mayonnaise and water in large bowl and whisk until smooth. Add processor mixture and blend thoroughly. Chill until served.