Quick and Delicious Summer Salad with fresh head lettuce from the farm and creamy spicy tahini Dressing!
Summer season is salad season. Fresh refreshing fruits and vegetables pick at the peak of deliciousness all tossed in a delicious dressing. Every week during the summer I volunteer at a local farm to help harvest vegetables for the CSA and Farm stand. I absolutely love it getting my hands in the dirt and learning so much about growing vegetables too.
I am also grateful each week I get to share some recipes in the weekly newsletter and highlight a specific vegetable we are harvesting that week. So I thought it would be fun to start sharing here as well. This week the vegetable of the week is head lettuce here are some fun facts and best ways to store:
Head Lettuce Interestingly enough there are five distinct types of lettuce leaf, romaine, crisphead, butterhead and stem yet there are a variety of greens that fall under each category.
Try Head Lettuce …
- In your favorite salad recipe
- Tossed in a delicious soup or pasta just before serving
- Use the leaves instead of bread for any meal
- Grill Romaine and make a grilled caesar salad
- Blend into a pesto or smoothies
- Saute with anchovies, garlic, olive oil and top with parmesan for a quick side dish
Did you know?
- Lettuce is an annual leaf vegetable part of the daisy family
- Lettuce was first cultivated by the ancient Egyptians who turned it from a weed whose seeds were used to produce oil, into a food plant grown for its succulent leaves and oil-rich seeds.
- About 70% of the lettuce grown in the US comes from California (except from November through March when 90% of the nation’s lettuce come from Yuma, Arizona) and about 75% of all lettuce grown in the US is iceberg lettuce. Outside of the US, China is the world’s largest producer of lettuce, with almost half of the lettuce being consumed today grown by the Chinese.
- The best flavors that pair with lettuce are balsamic vinegar, blue cheese, chickpeas, cucumber, feta, herbs, garlic, goat cheese, honey, lemon, roasted root vegetables, tomato, walnut oil, and vinegar.
- Lettuce is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin K, folate and molybdenum. It is also a very good source of dietary fiber, manganese, potassium, biotin, vitamin B1, copper, iron and vitamin C.
- How to select and store?
- Look for fresh bright green leaves and little to no bruising and wilting
- Choose firm heads and strong leaves, wash very well
- Once leaves are washed, wrap in a towel and store in your vegetable drawer for up to one week . Make sure they are very dry before storing!
- Lettuce shouldn’t be stored near apples, bananas, or any other ethylene-emitting fruits. Ethylene causes lettuce to ripen super fast and start to decay rapidly!
Summer Salad with Spicy Tahini Dressing
- 2 ears of corn grilled and cut off the cob
- 1 cucumber diced
- 1 large head of lettuce washed dried well and chopped
- 1 avocado peeled and diced
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes cut in half
- 1 cup tahini
- 1/2 cup water
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
- 2-3 hot chile peppers can use your favorites just remove seeds
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- Dressing – Place all ingredients in a high powered blender, blend until smooth and add more salt if needed. Dressing will last in the fridge up to one week To serve – add lettuce to a large bowl drizzle with 1 -2 tbsp dressing and toos season with salt and pepper. Toss in remaining ingredients and toss in remaining dressing 1 tbsp at a time until you have added your desired amount. Serve immediately.
If you make this recipe I love to hear from you! Happy cooking XOXO