Thursday, July 30, 2020

Knockoff Baby’s House Salad a la Clemente’s Trolley Pizza @lucyburdette

LUCY BURDETTE: In THE KEY LIME CRIME (coming August 11), Hayley Snow has two assignments for Key Zest--a round-up of key lime pie, and reviews of casual restaurants in Key West. By the end of the story, she's oversaturated with pie--as I was while writing the book!

This dressing is based on a salad I’m mad for at my favorite pizza place in Key West, called Clemente’s Trolley Pizza. This is one of the places that Hayley reviews. We always order Baby's salad to go with our pizza so we feel slightly virtuous and healthy. (I know, it's a sham, but it's good to splurge once in a while.) The secret to the salad is homemade Italian dressing. Hayley Snow's stepfather makes this dressing for a homey dinner in THE KEY LIME CRIME.

I remember the days when I used packaged Italian dressing liberally—on salads, marinating vegetables, marinating meat. But once you read the labels and see how much assorted salt, sugar, and other chemicals is included in those packets, you may feel motivated to make your own as I did.

For the salad:

Lettuce, romaine (or mixed greens with arugula)


Carrots, shredded

Red onions

Garbanzos, drained and rinsed

Blue cheese



Homemade Italian dressing

· 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil*

· 1/4 cup white wine vinegar*

· 2 Tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

· 1 Tsp dried parsley

· 2 teaspoons dried minced onion

· 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

· 1 teaspoon dried basil

· 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

· 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

· 1 teaspoon honey or sugar

· 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

· ½ tsp crushed red pepper or to taste if you want a little zip

· ¼ tsp salt

Mix the spices and cheese with the sugar, vinegar and lemon juice and shake well. Add the olive oil and shake until well mixed. 

Store any leftovers in the refrigerator. 

I served the salad with ziti and sauce, and sauteed Italian sausage with garlic and broccoli rabe. Not pizza, but yummy!

My next book, THE KEY LIME CRIME, available August 11...

You can order it at an independent bookstoreBarnes and Noble, Amazon, and anywhere books are sold!

Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mystery series, featuring fiesty food critic Hayley Snow. Ebook versions of DEATH ON THE MENU and A DEADLY FEAST are on sale for two weeks now--to help celebrate the upcoming THE KEY LIME CRIME! ($1.99 and 2.99)

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  1. A tease, indeed!
    It really is amazing how easy it is to make a fresh salad dressing (or marinade, as the case may be). But old habits die hard, don't they?
    I'm curious. Why do the oil and vinegar have asterisks
    * in the ingredients? I don't see a footnote.

    1. that's funny Libby, I have no idea why I might have put those asterisks in!