You might believe that the only place for Romaine lettuce is in a salad. However, this could not be further from the truth. This crispy and delicious salad leaf is ideal for use in a number of different dishes. All that you need is a little imagination.
Everything you need to know about this variety of lettuce
The name Romaine lettuce means Roman Lettuce. This is a nod to its Roman origins. However, the fact that it is also called Cos lettuce may indicate that this lettuce comes from the Greek island of Cos. There is also evidence that this variety of lettuce was used by Ancient Egyptians in a fertility ritual for the god Min. Given this impressive history, it is no wonder that this lettuce is one of the most-loved across the globe.
Cos lettuce generally grows as a tall and strong head of lettuce. The leaves are often an attractive dark green shade and it has lighter ribs running down the sides of the lettuce. Once the tougher green leaves are peeled away, the tender heart of the lettuce is revealed. When you bring home this lettuce, it is crucial to wash it thoroughly as it may be contaminated with bacteria from the fertilizer used during production.
The versatility of this humble green vegetable
If you are looking for a reason to prepare Romaine lettuce then the sheer number of preparations of this vegetable should convince you. Traditionally, this lettuce is used in Caesar salads and usually, the lettuce is left uncooked. However, you can add a delectable twist to this dish by grilling your Cos lettuce before you add it to your salad. Alternatively, you can use the tougher outer leaves for a salad and save the hearts to braise in wine and stock. Not only is this incredibly tasty, but it might just be the most tender thing that you have ever eaten. Finally, you can roughly chop the lettuce and saute it in some butter with chilli for an outstanding side dish that steals the show.
When left raw, this lettuce is perfect for use in salads or as a garnish on your favourite burgers. However, when cooked, it is the perfect side dish for a number of different meat dishes. Another option is to use the leaves instead of a bun.
Where to enjoy this treat
Romaine lettuce might just be one of the tastiest vegetables around, however, many people are put off by the bitter taste. Fortunately, when it is eaten warm, it is unlikely that this vegetable will keep its bitterness.