Grilled Cabbage Caesar Salad (GF panko)

There is beautiful Savoy cabbage at the farmers markets now. This salad takes the savoury anchovy, garlic and cheese flavours of a classic Caesar salad and runs with it. Grill your cabbage on the barbecue or in a skillet. Adapted from a recipe by chef Andrew Carmellini.

2 sm heads Savoy cabbage (2 lb.)
1 T kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 c extra-virgin olive oil
10 lrg garlic cloves, finely minced (about a ¼c), divided
1 T finely grated orange zest
½ c fresh orange juice
1 T finely grated lemon zest
⅓ c fresh lemon juice
6 oil-cured anchovy fillets, finely minced (1 T)
1 T capers, finely minced
1 T golden raisins, finely minced
½ c + 2 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 c panko bread crumbs
1 c finely-grated aged pecorino cheese, plus more for topping
3 boquerones (marinated white anchovies), optional

Prepare the cabbage: Split each head of cabbage lengthwise into quarters, leaving the core in place in order to hold the leaves together during cooking. Place the quarters on a large rimmed baking sheet, cut-side up. Season with salt and pepper to taste and drizzle with oil; rub all over the cabbage, focusing on the cut sides so that the seasoned oil seep in between the leaves. Let marinate, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the vinaigrette: In a medium bowl, add 1 tablespoon of the garlic, the citrus zest and juices, anchovies, capers and raisins. Stir to combine. Slowly whisk in a ½ cup of oil; season to taste. Set the vinaigrette aside.

Make the panko: In a large skillet over medium heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and 3 tablespoons garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until the garlic just begins to turn golden, 1-1½ minutes. Add the panko and gently stir to combine.

Turn the heat down to medium-low and continue cooking and stirring until the panko is evenly toasted and crispy, 5-7 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the panko to a large baking sheet and set aside to cool to room temperature.

Preheat a cast-iron grill pan or skillet over very high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the cabbage, cut-side down. Cook, turning occasionally, until the cabbage is charred all over, 10-12 minutes. Or, follow the same procedure on your barbecue grill. Using tongs, transfer cabbage to a large heatproof bowl and cover tightly. Set the cabbage aside to steam until the centers are tender when poked with a knife, 15-20 minutes.

Once the cabbage is tender and cool enough to handle, cut the quarters crosswise into large chunks, about 2-inches wide. Return to the bowl and add the cheese, vinaigrette, and half of the panko. Toss well to coat, then transfer the salad to a wide, shallow bowl. Top with the remaining panko, more pepper and pecorino and the white anchovies (if using). Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves 4-6.