This salad originates from a restaurant called "Marshalls" in Marshall, Michigan. It's been a part of my family's salad-making tradition for decades. Recently, I did a search to see if the restaurant is still open. Sadly, it isn't (as far as I can tell). But if I met the creator of this salad today, he or she would be mauled with my hugs and gratitude for orchestrating this flavorful masterpiece. The ingredients blend so beautifully together that they actually make you crave this salad the next day.
It is pretty rare to keep a salad overnight. Especially because salads usually get too wilty. But trust me. Wrap it up and put it in the fridge. You will wake up wanting more. It's that good.
Ingredients for dressing:
3 garlic cloves crushed
3/4 cup vegetable oil
Salt and Pepper
Ingredients for homemade croutons:
1 loaf of white or wheat bread (about 1/2 pound)
2 sticks butter or margarine
5 garlic cloves minced
Salt and pepper
Ingredients for salad:
2 heads Romaine lettuce
2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
1 cup swiss cheese grated
1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated
2/3 cup slivered almonds toasted
1/2 pound bacon (about 6 slices)
1. Prepare dressing. Combine juice of lemon, crushed garlic, salt, pepper and vegetable oil. Refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours. You can also finely chop the garlic if you prefer a stronger garlic taste to the dressing.
2. Make croutons. You can dry out the bread by opening the package and slitting the top of the loaf the night prior to preparation. Or, you can cube the bread first, place on cookie sheets and set in the oven on low temp until desired dryness. Once cubed bread is dry, set aside. Mince garlic. Melt butter in skillet over low heat. Raise temperature to medium heat. Add garlic and cook for about 2 minutes or so. Increase heat to med-high and add bread cubes. Stir regularly until bread is browned. Set aside.
3. Saute bacon. Tear into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.
4. Add slivered almonds to small frying pan. Set on low-med heat to toast. Set aside.
5. Rinse Romaine lettuce and pat dry. Tear into pieces and place in large salad bowl. Toss in tomatoes, swiss cheese, parmesan cheese, almonds and bacon.
6. Lightly stir dressing in prep bowl. If you used crushed garlic, remove cloves. Slowly stir into the salad. Garnish with croutons.
Note: If you are preparing this salad for a vegetarian, simply remove the bacon. Marshall Salad tastes wonderful with or without it!