Friday, May 9, 2014

Yes, You Can Sauté Lettuce

They were lying in the fridge, neglected over the many days of Pesach, only unearthed after the top layer of edibles was removed. A three-pack of English cucumbers, superlong, ideal for faux-light saber battles. 

They were getting on, soft to the touch. 

Must save them! 

Cucumber salad? No, two containers worth still had to be consumed. Regular salad? Blah, so much work to chew. 

Then the imp of ingenuity suggested in my ear: How about you sauté them? After all, they're pretty similar to zucchini, right? 

Since I don't trust my inner muse all that much, I googled this concept and was relieved to discover that it is not "wrong."

That day's lunch was sautéed onion, cucumber, and mushrooms with a dusting of garlic powder and black pepper. 

Watching Jacques Pépin one evening, he casually chopped up some lettuce and tossed it into the frying pan. He didn't even look furtively over his shoulder before he did it. There's even a recipe out there for Pea & Lettuce Stew. It can be stewed!

I am not a salad person. Lettuce is usually not cut small enough that it always has to be negotiated into the mouth (goodbye, lipstick), and the chewing, ugh, so much chewing

Well, now, after slicing the head of lettuce into neat strips, I just sauté the whole shebang; it goes appealingly limp, making it much more manageable to eat. Light cooking (not overdone cooking) actually helps release the nutrients for better absorption, according to some.
There are few rules when it comes to cooking (as opposed to baking). It's nice.

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