Top with a bit of honey mustard vinaigrette or a simple balsamic dressing. But there are many types of lettuces to know -- all with different shapes, sizes and flavors. You can certainly use it to create a salad but it's also fantastic on top of things like pizza and burgers. Get daily tips and expert advice to help you take your cooking skills to the next level. Raddichio. Its ends are green while its core is a pale yellow and white. It’s often chopped into small slivers to add crunch and strong flavor throughout a salad. Frisée is best known as the base for a classic French bistro salad that includes bacon and a poached egg on top and is also delicious in a pear salad with blue cheese and walnuts. Article number 50016. Discard the external leaves if they are damaged or wilted. (Lol, you think I'm joking? Just be sure to eat them quickly. Treat it the same as endive or lettuce. It stays crisp and doesn't bolt (flower) and turn bitter as easily as other lettuces, so is a favorite with summer gardeners who want to keep themselves in lettuce all season long. Best of all, you can create different dishes using the hearts (which are a little crunchier) and the leaves (which are a little softer). Butterhead Lettuce, whose best-known varieties are Boston and Bibb lettuce, is favored for its sweet, mild flavor and delicate texture. Just before serving, add the dressing and toss. If you're still making salads with the same ol' romaine, you may not be aware just how big and beautiful the world of lettuce and leafy greens is. It generally lasts a while without wilting but just be sure you choose a lettuce head with leaves that are a beautiful bright green. Radicchio needs about 60 to 70 days to mature, much longer than lettuce or endive. Instead of a generic looking and tasting salad, you can make something interesting to eat and look at. If you want to cook it, you can use it in everything from stuffings to sauces—but be wary, it cooks down to be much smaller than it is raw. They are the green fronds from the chrysanthemum plant that grows the popular flowers, which are more commonly known as mums in some areas. If working with small heads, use the leaves whole. You can find it in green or purple and both kinds stay crunchy for a long time in the fridge. Most mesclun sold today is cultivated, meaning planted as beds of mixed lettuce seeds and harvested when the leaves reach the desired size of 3 to 6 inches. Lately, however, you will find it more and more at farmers markets and specialty stores. Little Gems are especially delicious with thinly sliced radishes or spears of gently steamed asparagus. It is a crisp-head lettuce, meaning its leaves form a compact head as it grows—although its head is much less compact than iceberg lettuce. It's gotten a bad rep as a bland health food, but that's because people don't know how to prepare it. Although radicchio has some cold hardiness, it may not form a head before winter comes. It is more resistant to a warmer climate, staying crispier than other lettuce varieties. sirloin steak, Wish-Bone Italian Dressing, torn romaine lettuce leaves and 4 more. It has a bit more body than many lettuces and mixes well with other vegetables. Much like arugula, dandelion greens are a little bitter but very delicious. Lettuce does well in raised beds or a traditional garden. You'll mainly see this lettuce as a burger topping or even as a low-carb substitute for a bun. Besides, no store could possibly stock the number of lettuce varieties available to a gardener. Purple basil has a striking dark burgundy color that provides excellent contrast in the … Use arugula alone to stand up to tangy dressings such as lemon garlic vinaigrette and bold flavors such as blue cheese, or mix it with other lettuces as an accent note. It's a great option to have in your fridge because it doesn't wilt easily but is still tender. Whatever cress we're talking about, they're all members of the mustard family. Try tossing with a feta vinaigrette or yogurt buttermilk dressing. These lettuces, which come in red or green, are not quite as crisp as something like romaine, but are great for those who want an earthier taste. Plant in summer for fall harvest. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at, MediaNews Group/Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images. Lettuce's native range spreads from the Mediterranean to Siberia, although it has been transported to almost all areas of the world.Plants generally have a height and spread of 15 to 30 cm (6 to 12 in). This burgundy lettuce is also referred to as Italian chicory. 12 Different Types Of Lettuce To Seriously Up Your Salad Game. Lactuca sativa. Mesclun means "mixed" in Provencal and is traditionally composed of several varieties of wild-harvested, young greens. If you're a gardener, this is an easy type of lettuce to start with. It features shredded and vinaigrette-dressed iceberg lettuce and salami mixed with petite mozzarella balls (bocconcini), which she loves because each is a perfect little bite. Our seeds are untreated, most are open-pollinated, and many are certified organic. Despite the wide variety of lettuces available, most are not grown commercially in quantity. There are three main types of lettuce: crisphead, butterhead and loose-leaf. Try it drizzled with a light vinaigrette or a sesame seed dressing. Learn More. While a popular way to eat endive is slowly and carefully braised to caramelized brown perfection, endive also adds a solid crunch to any salad, whether on its own or mixed with other greens. Cut the Treviso in half, sprinkle with some olive oil and grill on the cutting edge. Because of its fairly mild taste, it pairs well with everything from fruits to cheese to make a delicious summer salad. Its aromatic and peppery flavor is the perfect complement to a great variety of preparations. And what are dandelion greens anyway? Crisphead lettuces-such as iceberg and romaine-grow in very tightly clasped round heads. It is easy to grow. These tight, compact heads are packed with flavor and crunch. Taste: Red chicory lettuce with long, broad leaves and a fresh bitter taste. … Strawberry Lettuce Salad Foodista. Fancy yourself a red leaf lettuce lover? If you prefer a sweeter flavor for your greens, try roasting or grilling radicchio first, then adding to your dish. This leafy green is actually a leaf cabbage and has an earthy and strong flavor that makes it as delicious to eat cooked as it is raw. An award-winning food writer and cookbook author, Molly Watson has created more than 1,000 recipes focused on local, seasonal ingredients. Does great in salads or as a side dish. Raised beds help air movement and soil drainage to control soil-borne root and leaf diseases. Much cultivated "watercress" is actually garden cress, which has slightly less bite and crunch than its watercress cousin. Plus, it has a softer, less bitter, flavor than its redder cousins. Its a good thing to keep in your crisper though because it tastes more mild and almost sweet when you grill it. Frisée is another type of endive. ... Roasted Lettuce, Radicchio, and Endive Roasted Lettuce, Radicchio, and Endive "A Sicilian grandmother taught me to make roasted lettuces this way. Crisp Romaine lettuce, chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion and radicchio are drizzled with a … We may earn commission from the links on this page. 15 Romaine Lettuce Delish participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. I'm not!) You're probably pretty familiar with this type of lettuce because it's the go-to lettuce for everything from the base of house salads to the middle of Italian subs. In the kitchen, the leafy green is great on sandwiches, wilted in soups, braised or grilled, and it’s fabulous in smoothies. Cos: this is a crisp pale green lettuce with elongated leaves. Red leaf has a burgundy tint and mild flavor, similar to that of green leaf, while oak leaf is spicier and nuttier. Like many varieties of lettuce, Batavia comes with all green or red-tinted leaves. Resistance to bottom rot, downy mildew races 1-16, 19, 21. Arugula (sometimes you'll hear it called rocket) is a spicy and peppery leafy green that is certainly an acquired taste. Leaf lettuce is great because it's chock full of nutrients and antioxidants while still being very low in calories. Delish editors handpick every product we feature. We have 4 varieties...Italian, Spanish, Greek and Bleu cheese and cranberries. As with Batavia lettuce, there are several varieties of oak leaf lettuce—green, red, bronze—but they are all loose-leaf lettuces, meaning the leaves stay loose and attached only at the base as they grow instead of forming tight, compact heads like iceberg lettuce or cabbage. For us, if it's in a bowl mixed with some delicious veggies and dressing, it deserved a spot on the list. Plants produce dark red leaves. Look for small, round, loosely formed heads with pale green outer leaves and pale yellow inner leaves. Of course, you can chop up brilliant magenta radicchio or its longer, leaner cousin, Treviso, to put in salads, but speckled radicchio is a real beauty. The leaves are colorful, mainly in the green and red color spectrums, with some variegated varieties. Look for mixes that contain young, sweet leaves from a variety of tender lettuces—maybe a bit of curly endive for texture, some peppery watercress or arugula for bite, and a few herbs. Each leaf has a substantial rib running along the center. Mizuna is an Asian variety of mustard greens. It's got a refreshing bite and a delightfully curly appearance which is bound to make anything you pair it with look fancier. Italian Recipes 1 of 25 Its crunchy texture can stand up to any dressing, from a light gingery vinaigrette to a full-blown thick and creamy blue cheese dressing. In a bowl, whisk the first seven ingredients; set aside. It has spiky dark green leaves that have a surprisingly delicate texture and delightfully peppery, even spicy kick. Though it's pretty crispy, it's also fairly water-based, so it'll last a while in your fridge, but doesn't have much in the way of nutrients or taste. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Dress with a bit of ranch for something the whole family will love. Bright and peppery, young and tender chrysanthemum greens are a tasty addition to salads. The leaves are sweet and crunchy and great if you like things like romaine and iceberg lettuce. Just a quick not before we dive in: Some of these are technically leafy greens, but you'll often see them colloquially referred to as lettuce. Summer crisp / French crisp / Batavian lettuce type that is at first open, much like a loose-leaf lettuce, then matures into a heavy, compact bunch or head. Far from the shrink-wrapped iceberg lettuce we all know so wellperfectly round and crunchy, almost all water, and able to last a long time after harvestthe multitude of lettuce varieties available at the grocery store and farmers markets offer a wide range of textures, colors, and flavors. It's also packed with vitamin C. Pro tip: If you think you don't like kale because it's too tough to chew, make sure you're massaging it before eating it in a will change everything. Instead of forming heads like other lettuce varieties, this lettuce’s structure consists of … If you want to experience everything that the world of salads has to offer, look no further than below—a list of 12 of the most popular lettuces and leafy greens. Since most Belgian endive is now grown indoors (it used to be grown buried in sand to keep the leaves white), it's a great option come dead of winter when you're craving that satisfying fresh-leaf crunch. Combine with: In Italy often grilled and served as an alternative to steak. Little Gem lettuce is soft with just a hint of crunch. Some might say it's stretching things to include dandelion greens here, but there are people who relish the sharp, bitter hit of raw dandelion. The delicate flavor is well suited to light vinaigrettes (ginger vinaigrette is lovely) and lemony dressings. Preparation: a milder taste than the radicchio rosso. Watercress has a bright, peppery flavor prized for salads and gently "wilted" preparations. Lettuce will tolerate many soil types but prefers loose loams (pH 6.0-6.8) or organic soils (pH 5.5-6.0). For this reason, leaf lettuce is generally more perishable than head varieties. If you're interested in exploring lettuce beyond "cardboard" iceberg, then we've got the guide for you. The leaves can be long and spiked or shorter and more rounded, but they all share that dark green color. Purple Basil. This bright plant is actually a leaf chicory. It is easy as 1,2, 3... just open the jar, pour and enjoy! Igloo. It grows wild in streams in Northern America and Europe but is easily cultivated with the right irrigation. Some of the more common lettuce varieties include: Butter: a soft leaf lettuce that has a bright green head and a mild flavour. Disease resistant variety. They make excellent salads and work with a wide range of dressings. Allrecipes has more than 110 trusted romaine lettuce salad recipes complete with ratings, reviews and tips. rocket) has dark green leaves and a peppery flavor. As one of its other names would suggest, Batavia lettuce is more tolerant of warmer weather than many salad greens. Seeds From Italy is the U.S. distributor for Franchi Seeds, Italy's oldest family-owned seed company, founded in 1783. Tradition says that a shallot vinaigrette brings out the best in mâche. Butter lettuce has a tender texture and large, cupped leaves that work beautifully in salads, especially with delicately flavored dressings such as buttermilk dill salad dressing or in asparagus butter lettuce salad. In Italy, this lettuce is generally called rucola and it grows in the wild in many regions of the country (the wild variety is called “rughetta”). Tender stalks and roots are perfectly edible along with the dark green leaves. How To Celebrate New Year's Safely At Home, 68 Sweet Strawberry Desserts You Can't Resist, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. Purslane has thick, almost spongy leaves and works well with delicate herb-laced dressings or something bright like a lemon-parsley dressing. Try Just Add Lettuce. Try exclusive recipes with step-by-step video instruction from Pro instructors. That's cool, but have you ever taken a step on the wild side and tried arugula? Butter lettuce is commonly available. Cook like a Pro Make dinner tonight, get skills for a lifetime. Look for lettuce year-round in ultra-temperate climates, fall and spring in mainly temperate areas, and in the late spring through the summer months in cooler climates. In general, salad greens are cool weather crops, at their best in spring and early summer before high heats and long days make them bolt and turn bitter. Looking for romaine lettuce salad recipes? Because they're particularly tender, they wilt relatively quickly. Romaine lettuce is hale and hearty and is the ubiquitous lettuce in a Caesar salad. Romaine lettuce grows in elongated heads. Leaf Lettuce. Look for pale green and red-tinged varieties. You'll often see it in \"baby lettuce,\" mesclun, and spring mixes because of its tenderness. There are also a few varieties with yellow, gold or blue-teal leaves. Another green variety, ‘Igloo,’ with its lightly serrated leaves, is quick to mature in only 70 days. Dont settle for those pale, limp pieces of green wilting under the salad bar glass. The older they get, the sharper their flavor becomes. In a large bowl, combine the lettuce, onions, celery, mozzarella cheese, olives and tomato. Larger leaves can be torn into bite-sized pieces when cleaning. Heirloom Lettuce Varieties. In 22 years of growing and tasting every wild or tamed salad candidate that any seed source had to offer, we still find lettuce the most pleasing and welcome raw food of midsummer. Radicchio is part of the chicory family and is known for it’s red leaves and it’s spicy bitter … (Yes, I said grill.) Ah, kale. This lettuce, also known as French crisp, isn't the most commonly used green, but you'll notice it because of its ridged leaves. This cultivar comes directly from Italy, making it a perfect garnish for all of your Italian-style dishes. Batavia Lettuce. Purslane is often foraged; it grows wild and people pick it in meadows and parks. Celebrate the taste of summer this week and enjoy our Italian Chopped Salad. Open pollinated. Learn about the types of lettuce you can buy to perk up salads, make great wraps or char on the grill. In 1930 the U.S. Department of Agriculture reissued Farmer’s Bulletin 1609, Lettuce Growing, and listed the leading varieties of lettuce then under cultivation. Lettuce: Lactuca sativa One of the very oldest garden plants and still always the essence of summer salad. Italian dandelion is another form of radicchio, a bitter green for salads or cooking. Cultivated arugula is widely available and varies greatly in strength of flavor. Mâche, also known as corn salad or lamb's lettuce, comes in lovely little rosettes of dark green leaves attached in groups of 4 or 5 at the roots. Arugula (a.k.a. Since lettuce is best freshly picked, it does not travel or store well. There isn't a taste difference between the two, so choose whichever will look best on your table. Spinach is a super versatile veggie, but there is nothing we love more than eating it as part of a salad. I like it for a change from serving cold salad." Just Add Lettuce. Some farms and markets sell special "spicy" mixtures that have more arugula, watercress, mizuna, and mustard leaves. People love romaine for its crispness and fresh taste that works well as the base of many a salads. They need to be young for the best flavor raw; larger, older greens will take on a bitter edge that gets tamed by cooking. Lettuce isn’t just about salads, although your fresh-picked lettuce varieties will make you swear off boring lettuce from the store. Use cress as soon as possible, removing any yellowed or wilted leaves. Arugula is also a great way to add a kick to hearty dishes like chicken with bread salad and arugula. To avoid instant wilting, … 2) Oakleaf Lettuce: “Oakleaf lettuce appears to have myriad vitamins and minerals in high supply compared with other types of lettuce,” Hunnes says. It's known for its spicy and bitter taste, so you probably don't want to make this the base of your salad. … This twisted, curly, frizzled green is endive, and has all the bright bitterness and delicious crunch that goes along with that family of greens. Instead of a generic looking and tasting salad, you can make something interesting to eat and look at. It is also a tasty add-on in the Japanese mochi soup often eaten at New Year's. French Crisp or Summer Crisp), Photo © PhotoAlto/Laurence Mouton/Getty Images, Photo © Maximilian Stock Ltd./Getty Images, Photo © Ryoji Yoshimoto/Aflo/Getty Images, 10 Fresh and Tender Spring Greens for Salads, Putting to Rest the Chicory-Endive-Escarole Confusion, 15 Festive Christmas Salads for Your Holiday Dinner, Southern Wilted Lettuce With Hot Bacon Dressing Recipe. Time to jazz up your boring salad by adding the very first Three Dimensional salad dressing! Allrecipes has more than 150 trusted Italian salad recipes complete with ratings, reviews and cooking tips. Lollo Rosso, Rocket and Biondo In northern Europe, star status in the 1990s was conferred on two varieties of Italian lettuce, lollo rosso and its close cousin biondo, prized principally for the outer frills of the leaves that meant presentation was less of a headache for image conscious restaurant cooks. Because of this, it has the nutritional benefits of leafy lettuces and the snap of head lettuces. In general, larger leaves tend to be stronger tasting, but if pungency is a concern, be sure to taste the batch before using. There are three types of leaf lettuce: red, green, and oak. Bibb lettuce is a type of butter head lettuce, which makes sense because of its soft texture and slightly sweet flavor. Don't look for a \"head\" on them because the leaves branch from a single stalk. Mesclun is often dressed with a classic French vinaigrette, but it's a forgiving mix that works well with a wide range of dressings. With a spicy… It requires extra care when cleaning since sand and grit tend to gather in the nub of roots holding each rosette together. Another type of butter lettuce, Boston lettuce is known for its soft and sweet leaves that can serve as a great bed for salads or for lettuce cups. Far from the shrink-wrapped iceberg lettuce we all know so well—perfectly round and crunchy, almost all water, and able to last a long time after harvest—the multitude of lettuce varieties available at the grocery store and farmers markets offer a wide range of textures, colors, and flavors. Give it a few extra swishes in the water to get them clean. And yes, they really are the leaves off that ever-present plant so they're generally pretty cheap and hearty. Kristin Salaky is the news editor at covering viral foods, product launches, and food trends. It looks and acts a bit more like "regular" lettuce with its leafier leaves and primarily green color. The Spruce Eats uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience and for our, Batavia Lettuce (a.k.a. The 12 Best Types of Ice Cream Around The World, Applebee’s New $1 Drink Has 5 Types of Alcohol, This Type of Steak Could Make You Seriously Sick. Wild-harvested arugula is the most pungent; look for it at farmers markets and local foods co-ops. It tends to have a bit of a bitter edge, so know your audience or use them sparingly with other salad greens. Resistant to bolting, heat, and tip burn. We sell more than 450 varieties of Italian heirloom vegetable, herb, and flower seeds. It's full of minerals like vitamin C and vitamin A and is also very high in iron. You can blanch and braise this dark leaf to tame its intense flavor, but if you like the strong taste, match it with strong acidic and/or pungent dressings. Due to its sturdy texture, it can even be grilled. Taste is mildly sweet and succulent.
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