Fruit and Vegetable Guide
Spring, Summer, Autumn
Description: Lettuce varieties abound. Most head lettuces and looseleaf lettuces have relatively mild flavors, and vary in appearance, color, and texture. Other leafy greens used for salad include romaine, arugula, curly endive, frisee, chicory, and watercress; these are more intensely-flavored.
Selection: Choose crisp, fresh lettuce and salad greens. Because they are very perishable, they should be purchased only in excellent condition.
Storage and handling: Refrigerate crisper varieties up to 7 days, wrapped in slightly damp paper towels in a plastic bag from which the air has been removed. Before eating, separate leaves from the head and swish in a bowl of cold water until no grit is present.
Preparation: Be sure the greens are dry, as dry greens hold dressing better. Tear do not cut into pieces. Hardier, sharper-tasting greens like escarole and chicory can be sautéed in butter or oil.
Serving suggestions: Toss raw lettuce or greens with vinaigrette or your favorite dressing and chopped vegetables or fruit, toasted nuts, and/or dried fruit (SIS, p. 44); serve immediately. Leftover lettuce can be added to soup or quiche. The sharper tasting greens do well with a hot bacon dressing.
Nutrients: Vitamins A (dark green lettuces) and K; lutein and zeaxanthin antioxidants (green lettuce).
1 lb raw = 10-16 cups
© 2011 Mennonite Central Committee