The J.L. Hudson Maurice salad — with crisp iceberg lettuce, julienned ham, turkey or chicken, Swiss cheese, gherkins and a creamy, mayo-based dressings — is also a longstanding signature dish this region. Many remember it being a highlight on the menu at restaurants inside Hudson’s department stores.
The “Maurice salad” itself is not exclusively a Detroit thing, but its origins aren’t clear. According to a Chicago newspaper, it was invented by French chef P.A. Maurice who worked in the Netherland Plaza in New York City in the early 20th century. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports it originated there at the William Penn Hotel when a man with the first name Maurice asked for a salad with julienned ham, turkey breast, Swiss, tomatoes, egg and mayo dressing.
Besides at Hudson’s, a “Maurice salad” was served in Detroit at the tea room inside Crowley’s Detroit department store in the 1940s and later at the London Chop House in the 1960s.
Locally, the salad is synonymous with the former department store, and dozens of area restaurants still have a version of “Hudson’s Maurice” on their menu. The classic preparation that many think of is mentioned above, but variations include mixed greens or romaine instead of iceberg and the addition of green olive, hard-boiled egg, tomatoes and sometimes cucumbers.
Of all the recipes and descriptions I could find from throughout the decades, the constants seem to be that it has ham, either chicken or turkey, Swiss cheese and a tangy and sweet mayo-based dressing. (I even came across a recipe from the not-too-distant past that suggests adding green onion, green pepper and celery to the mix.)
Here are a few highlights from neighborhoods around the tri-county area that have the crisp, creamy classic on the menu.
The Hudson Cafe: The Maurice salad you can eat closest the Hudsons’ site, this popular downtown breakfast and brunch spot makes its version with romaine hearts, smoked ham, turkey, Swiss, gherkins, green olives and a house dressing. The Hudson Cafe also has a full menu of gourmet French toast, omelets, Benedicts, pancakes and crepes. 1241 Woodward, Detroit. (313) 237-1000. hudson-cafe.com. The Hudson Cafe’s sister restaurant the Jagged Fork, which has locations across Metro Detroit, also makes a version of this salad.
Karl’s: A bit of a love letter to classic Detroit diners from the mid 20th century, Karl’s has Barb’s Maurice, an homage to chef Kate Williams’ glamorous grandmother that highlights ham, turkey, olive and pickle. Williams said they took some “creative liberties” with the details, but at its core Barb’s Maurice stays true to the salad Hudson’s made famous. Karl’s recently reopened for dine-in service after being closed for several months, welcoming customers back to its glorious vintage-styled dining room on the second floor of the Siren Hotel. 1509 Broadway, Detroit. (313) 85-KARLS. karlsdetroit.com.
7 Greens: This salad haven makes a version called “Maurice Who?” with a mix of romaine and baby spinach plus roasted turkey, bacon, gherkins, Parmesan crisps and hard-boiled egg with a house-made “Maurice sauce.” 1222 Liberty, Detroit. (313) 964-9005. 344 Hamilton Row, Birmingham. (248) 792-8600. 7greens.com
Mudgie’s Deli & Wine Shop: Mudgie’s version starts with mixed greens topped with turkey, ham, Swiss, tomato, hard-boiled egg, banana peppers, chopped pickles and house-made croutons. Order online ahead, grab from the pickup window and enjoy on the patio or to-go. 1300 Porter, Detroit. (313) 961-2000. mudgiesdeli.com.
ZZ Market and Grill: This gourmet market had its grand opening in August with grab-and-go meals, catering, locally made products and options for vegans and vegetarians. Its Hudson’s Maurice has julienned ham, turkey and Swiss cheese, plus green olives, gherkins and Maurice dressing. Online ordering available. Pair it with an Italian sub or Wigley’s corned beef sandwich. 210 Henry, Detroit. (313) 816-0003. zzmarket.com.
Dish: The Maurice here is a little different at this carryout spot, served with chicken instead of turkey and the addition of red onion and sliced tomato. There are gherkins, but no egg or olive. 18441 Mack, Detroit. (313) 886-2444. dishdetroit.biz.
Side Street Diner: Stacked sandwiches and a large salad selection are found on the menu here, including Maurice, Asian chicken salad and a kale and quinoa bowl with feta cheese, pears and red onion in a lemon vinaigrette. They’ve got beer and wine, too. 630 St. Clair, Grosse Pointe. (313) 884-6810. sidestreetdiner.com.
The Continental at Ford House: This new restaurant at the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores is opening June 3 with a menu from chef Michael Keys that includes popovers and Hudson’s Maurice salad. The waterside restaurant (formerly the Cotswold Café) has indoor and outdoor seating and reservations are recommended. 1100 Lake Shore, Grosse Pointe Shores. (313) 884-4222. fordhouse.org.
Christoff’s Restaurant: The large breakfast and lunch menu at Christoff’s includes a Maurice salad with American and Swiss cheeses, plus ham, turkey, tomatoes, cucumbers and egg. The restaurant is open daily 8 a.m.-3 p.m. and has an outdoor patio. 22900 Allen, Woodhaven. (734) 675-4626. christoffsrestaurant.com.
River Village Family Restaurant: Located right on the Huron River in Rockwood, this casual eatery has a gigantic menu. Among the nine salads offered is its version of the Maurice, made with oven-roasted turkey, ham, Swiss cheese, green olives, sweet pickles, tomatoes and a house-made dressing. After lunch, hit up the kayak and canoe rental behind the restaurant and explore the river. 22825 Huron River, Rockwood. (734) 236-4033. rivervillagerestaurant.com.
Whistle Stop Diner: Formally named the J.L. Hudson’s Maurice, the salads at these neighborhood diners are made with diced tomatoes and another twist: black olives instead of green. If you’re sick of reading about salads by this point, the Whistle Stop in Pleasant Ridge (once Mae’s, a hipster brunch haven) also has really crave-able and juicy butter burgers. 501 S. Eton, Birmingham and 24060 Woodward in Pleasant Ridge. whistlestopdiners.com.
Mt. Chalet: A staple of the Woodward bar scene, especially during cruising season, this casual bar and restaurant has a Maurice with shredded iceberg lettuce, ham, shredded chicken breast, Swiss, egg, tomato and red onion. The sweet pickle is mixed in the dressing. In addition to indoor and outdoor dining, Mt. Chalet has an easy-to-use online ordering system for carryout. 32955 Woodward, Royal Oak. (248) 549-2929. mtchaletroyaloak.com.
Beau’s Grillery: A classic example here with iceberg lettuce, ham, rotisserie turkey, Swiss cheese, olives, egg, pickles and dressing. Neighborhood favorite Beau’s also has a large menu of American fare and full bar. 4108 W. Maple, Bloomfield Hills. (248) 626-2630. beausbloomfield.com.
Uptown Grille: More than a dozen salads are offered at Uptown Grille, including the Maurice with romaine lettuce topped with roasted turkey breast, smoked ham, Swiss, diced pickles, green olives, egg and creamy dressing. 3100 E. West Maple, Commerce Charter Township. (248) 960-3344
Jennifer’s Café: This neighborhood diner serves a Maurice salad with shredded lettuce, chicken breast, ham, Swiss cheese, sweet pickles, red onion and tomatoes with a house-made dressing. Jennifer’s Café is currently open for carryout only. 4052 Haggerty, Walled Lake. (248) 360-0190.
White Horse Inn: A historic restaurant that was renovated not too long ago, White Horse Inn offers a full menu of sturdy American fare in its rustically chic, barn-like dining room. Its Maurice boasts “Hudson’s classic recipe” with iceberg lettuce, ham, turkey, Swiss cheese, gherkins, egg and house-made dressing. 1 E. High Street, Metamora. (810) 678-2276. thewhitehorseinn.com. Find a similar dish at White Horse Inn’s sister restaurants the Moose Preserve and Iroquois Club in Bloomfield Hills, Camp Ticonderoga in Troy and Deadwood Bar and Grill in Northville.
Mike’s on the Water: A St. Clair Shores favorite, Mike’s makes its Maurice with cubed ham and turkey and tosses diced onions in with the mixed greens, Swiss cheese, egg, green olives, gherkins and house-made dressing. Most of the menu here is seafood-centric including lobster bisque, lake perch, fish tacos, peel-and-eat shrimp, grouper sandwich and a lobster roll. 24530 Jefferson, St. Clair Shores. (586) 872-2630.
Old School Deli: A breakfast and lunch spot that also does catering, Old School Deli is known for sandwiches and eggs benedict, but they also have a variety of salads, including the JLH Maurice. 30860 Groesbeck, Roseville. (586) 777-3354. oldschooldeli.com.
Honey Tree Grill: A diner with a Mediterranean twist, all Honey Tree locations serve a Maurice salad that is a mix of iceberg and romaine lettuce, ham, turkey, Swiss and American cheese, egg and gherkin. Visit honeytreegrille.com for locations.
Macy’s Maurice Dressing Recipe
After rebranding to Marshall Field’s for a short time in the 2000s, many Hudson’s stores became Macy’s, which carried on the tradition of the Maurice salad. Macy’s Lakeshore Grill restaurants are all closed locally, but the retailer still lists recipes for signature dishes on its website.
Courtesy of Macys.com. Makes approximately 5 cups.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons white vingear
1 ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
2 tablespoons yellow mustard
1 teaspoon dry mustard, spice ground
2 tablespoon yellow onion, pureed
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
2 large eggs, riced
1 quart mayonnaise
Blend lemon juice, vinegar, salt, mustard, dry mustard, onion puree and sugar until dissolved. Remove from blender and stir in parsley, eggs and mayo. Chill and store for up to five days.
Our special thanks to:detroitnews.com