🦀 🧡 Crab Lovers’ Crab Louie 🧡 🦀
Fabulous Dungeness Crab & Louie Dressing are the stars of this show. Tomato wedges, asparagus spears, cucumber slices, and hard boiled eggs definitely need not apply. 👎
This is a Crab Lover’s Crab Louie Salad. Cold crunchy shredded iceberg lettuce is lightly dressed with the terrific Louie Dressing, then a giant mound of Dungeness leg and shoulder crabmeat is piled on top. More dressing, a sprinkle of chopped chives and cracked black pepper. That’s it. Maybe a squeeze of lemon. It’s simply scrumptious with no rubbery eggs nor off-peak vegetables to distract from that stellar gift from the sea.
Apparently, no one can agree on the origins of the Crab Louie, but it is widely known that it is from the West Coast – San Francisco, Portland, and Seattle all have claims to the recipe. That being said, a bold wine pairing from the West Coast is in order. Here we serve the salad with Rombauer Vineyards 2022 Carneros Chardonnay.
The rich and buttery characteristics of many California Chardonnays complement the sweetness and delicate texture of crab meat. The wine’s acidity can also help cut through the richness of the creamy dressing. Rombauer is famous for its complex aromas, intense fruit flavors, and lively acidity.
Crab Lover’s Crab Louie Recipe
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Old School House Salad
Iceberg Lettuce, Tomato Wedges, Cucumber
Red Onion, Radish, Italian Dressing
When I was contemplating the ingredients for my Old School House Salad, the kind my mom served in the 60s and early 70s, there could only be one type of lettuce, Iceberg. Nice and crisp Iceberg ✅. Apparently iceberg aka crisphead, shipped on ice, was the only variety of lettuce that traveled well via train across the country back then. Especially from California to Chicago…
Cucumber ✅ Red Onion ✅ Radish ✅. And when it came to tomatoes, we always had tomato wedges in our salad. But curiously enough, nary a cherry tomato in sight back then. Turns out, cherry tomatoes did not become ubiquitous until the 1980s. Our tomatoes were medium-sized, red, round, and tasty. Tomato Wedges ✅. And I do recall that my dad liked Peperoncini ✅.
Italian dressing came in a bottle, made by Wish-Bone. It sat in the center of the dinner table along with bottles of Thousand Island, French, and Russian so everyone could dress their own salad their way. No Ranch though, Ranch dressing didn’t become popular until the early 1990s. Hidden Valley Ranch was first marketed as an herb & spice packet to mix with mayonnaise and buttermilk at home. It wasn’t even sold as a bottled dressing until 1983.
Also absent from our house salad – carrots, celery, mushrooms, nuts, seeds, olives – and I don’t think we ever had an avocado in our Chicago home until the early 70s when we “discovered” Mexican food. We did eat a lot of black olives though, they were served on a relish tray, not in the salad.
Old School House Salad Recipe
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