Cart Smarts: Throw your salad on the grill
We ordered a new variety of lettuce at the store this week — gem lettuce, which is a cross between butter and romaine.
These hearts are slightly sweet, with tender outer leaves and a crunchy core. The shape is similar to romaine lettuce, but much smaller.
As with other lettuces, the color is a good indicator of nutritional value. The darker green, outer leaves contain more vitamin A and vitamin K than the pale inner leaves. One serving is a head of gem lettuce, which is only 15 calories.
When we were discussing ways to entice customers to try this new product, we agreed that a salad wouldn't be exciting enough. Instead, we decided grilled lettuce would be fun and different.
I have read several recipes for grilled salads in the past but this was the first time I actually tried it. My eyes lit up at the first bite. I loved the caramelized, smoky flavor from the grill. The leaves were tender in the center and slightly charred on the edges. I really enjoyed this warm salad alternative.
For those of you who are bored with your typical salad routine, I highly recommend you try grilling your lettuce.
Grilled gem lettuce
1 package (6 count) Green Giant Fresh Little Gem Lettuce Hearts
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese, shredded
Heat gas or charcoal grill to medium-high heat. Cut each head of lettuce in half lengthwise. Drizzle cut side with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Place lettuce, cut side down, on grill. Cook 1 to 2 minutes or until slightly brown and grill marks show. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese before serving.
Recipe makes 6 servings.
Recipe adapted from www.greengiantfresh.com