Chef and cookbook author Julia Turshen shares her secret weapon: the salad dressing everyone begs her for.


“When I used to work regularly as a private chef, the most requested item I prepared for lots of different families was Caesar salad dressing. I was often asked to leave containers of it in refrigerators all over New York City! My master plan is to one day put it in a bottle (my mother is convinced that it will sell well and then my whole family will live in the “house that Julia’s Caesar built”), but, in the meantime, here’s the most direct way to get it from my kitchen to yours. The small victory here is abandoning convention and swapping a spoonful of mayonnaise for the customary raw egg to make a creamy, thick, luscious dressing without any worry about salmonella. Plus, what isn’t improved by a spoonful of mayonnaise?” —Julia Turshen, author, Small Victories

Get Julia’s Caesar salad dressing recipe here!

And once you’ve mastered this recipe, it’s easy to make it your own:

FOR A VEGETARIAN VERSION, use 1 tbsp drained capers in place of the anchovies.

FOR A VEGAN VERSION, use 1 tbsp drained capers in place of the anchovies and Vegenaise instead of regular mayonnaise, and leave out the Parmesan.

FOR THE EASIEST CREAMY MUSTARD DRESSING, whisk together 1 tbsp mayonnaise, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp seeded mustard, 3 tbsp red wine vinegar, and º cup extra-virgin olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Excerpted from the Small Victories cookbook.