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Jul 31, 2010 11:41 AM

Cooking Lettuce

I received a decent sized bag of green leaf lettuce (probably black Seed Simpson) from my friend the gardener. He said he often sautes it in butter and serves with a bit of lemon juice and salt.

I have never heard of cooking lettuce. I haven't tried the above yet, but intend to. What other fun can I have coking with lettuce?

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  1. Sometimes with butter lettuce I'll chop it up and use it in an omelet.

    I've also stir-fried romaine lettuce with julienned oyster mushrooms and conpoy.

    4 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      Romaine seems to be the favorite for cooking, maybe because it has a nice mix of soft leaf and stems that retain some crunch after cooking.

      The French peas and lettuce is my favorite way. Some bacon and bacon fat is a good alternative to butter.

      1. re: paulj

        There is very little that bacon fat doesn't improve. You get me a nice cast iron pan coated with bacon fat and you could saute styrofoam in it and I would probably be very tempted to eat it with glee.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          LOL - I'll have to remember that. Thanks for the laugh!

      2. A traditional French way to cook fresh peas - put leveral layers of lettuce leaves in a saucepan. Add peas and cover with more lettuce. Cook slowly over low heat.

        I will often shred the lettuce and mix it with the peas, adding mint and butter for the same slow braise (using no other liquid than the water on the lettuce leaves).

        5 Replies
        1. re: Sherri

          Sounds great. Any fat--preliminary butter in the pan, whatever?

          1. re: Masonville

            Some butter could never hurt! I'm sure that I put some in and apologize for not mentioning it.

            1. re: Sherri

              Or, as ipsedixit said above, how about bacon fat? ;-)

              1. re: boyzoma

                and a squeeze of lemon doesn't hurt either

          2. re: Sherri

            My method of cooking lettuce with peas is to use about 2 cups of shredded lettuce for about a pound of shelled peas. Start by melting 1 or 2 T of unsalted butter in a skillet over a moderately high flame. Add the white parts of a few thinly sliced scallions and cook till tender. Stir in the lettuce, usually green, and stir-fry for about a minute or so. Add the peas and about 1/4 cup chicken stock. Simmer uncovered till most of the liquid has evaporated. At the end stir in the green parts of the scallions which have been thinly sliced, taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary. We love lettuce cooked with peas.

          3. Lots of people cut romaine in half longitudinally, brush it with oil, hit it with some salt, and throw it on the grill for a few minutes.

            1. It is great in soups as well. I always add some when i am making Veg stock.

              1 Reply
              1. re: chefj

                I often throw it in soup in place of cabbage, due to what's on hand.

              2. I have to admit, I read your post title and came in because I didn't think you could seriously be asking this. There is almost nothing I despise more than hot lettuce. I suppose it could work for some varieties, but... *shudder*

                I'm interested to see others' takes on this.

                4 Replies
                1. re: irishnyc

                  To each his own but cooked lettuce is deliciose

                    1. re: chefj

                      Obviously it can be, which is why I'm interested. Every time I've ever even smelled it...

                    2. re: irishnyc

                      I'm with you irishnyc - I can't stand hot or even warm lettuce. I like lettuce in a salad, or on a sandwich if it's nice and cold, but I usually end up picking it off if it's been on a hot sandwich for more than a few minutes, and I can't stand it when Mexican restaurants put lettuce alongside a hot entree and it ends up getting mixed in. I don't have this aversion to any other greens, but lettuce... bleah.
                      But like chefj says, to each his own.