Grilled Romaine Salad with Smoked Tomato, Onion and Garlic Dressing

Brian Misko markets his own line of award-winning barbecue sauces and spices named after his competition team, House of Q.

2-3 heads romaine lettuce, washed and quartered through the stem
1 head garlic
1 tomato, cut in half
1 onion, peeled and cut in half
4 tbsp olive oil
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp Champagne or cider vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Prepare your grill for indirect cooking by heating only one side at medium heat. Cut off the top of the garlic head to expose some of each clove. Drizzle the tomato, onion and garlic with the olive oil and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place vegetables on the off, or cool, side and add smoke chips such as mesquite or hickory to the hot side. Close the lid and smoke the vegetables until soft (approximately 20 to 30 minutes). Remove from grill and set aside to cool.

In a food processor, blend together the mayonnaise, mustard, smoked tomato, smoked onion, smoked garlic cloves squeezed from their skins and the vinegar. Blend until smooth and season to taste. Dressing will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Preheat the grill to high heat and grill the lettuce to add searing marks and colour to the outside (about 30 seconds).  Take care not to leave the lettuce too long on the grill or it will overcook and wilt. Once ready, place the grilled romaine on individual serving dishes or a large platter and drizzle generously with the dressing. Serves 4 to 6.