Butterleaf lettuce

KathyW

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Hello!! :)
I'm in my second year gardening vegetables and I'm a bit stumped here. I could use some help.
I planted butterleaf lettuce
and was harvesting every couple days from the bottom of the plant. We live at the beach where it rarely gets over 70°. We had TWO days of 75°, I didn't harvest for a week, and my butterleaf lettuce took off!! It didn't bolt, like flowering, but the spines got pokey and the stalks got thick. I figured I'd just pull up the entire head and share with neighbors, but where the leaves meet the stalk has that milky sap. So it's pokey and sappy. Can I just pull the leafy part from the stems, or do I have to scrap this harvest? TIA
 

digitS'

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Butterhead lettuce is a very nice choice for salads.

Most any leaf toughens with age. The newer leaves may yet be tender, lower older leaves may be past their prime. Personally, I don't eat many leafy greens raw. Somewhere along the line, I discovered stir-fries. There are leafy greens that can be prepared in about the same way that you wouldn't find in an Asian restaurant.

Lettuce. Take a look at a recipe for "wilted lettuce." You can either make a hot oil type sauce and pour it over the lettuce or take the lettuce and put it right in the skillet. I first had that when I was about 20 years old, at an old lady's house. Wilted Lettuce - she fried bacon until it was crisp, set it aside. The lettuce went in the the hot skillet in the bacon fat. The bacon was crumbled and sprinkled on top before serving. Kind of old lettuce, fully mature anyway ... It may be the best way for you to use what you now have. And, you can use a vegetable oil instead of bacon fat ;).

Steve
 

flowerbug

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Hello!! :)
I'm in my second year gardening vegetables and I'm a bit stumped here. I could use some help.
I planted butterleaf lettuce
and was harvesting every couple days from the bottom of the plant. We live at the beach where it rarely gets over 70°. We had TWO days of 75°, I didn't harvest for a week, and my butterleaf lettuce took off!! It didn't bolt, like flowering, but the spines got pokey and the stalks got thick. I figured I'd just pull up the entire head and share with neighbors, but where the leaves meet the stalk has that milky sap. So it's pokey and sappy. Can I just pull the leafy part from the stems, or do I have to scrap this harvest? TIA
if you cut off the stuff that is tender is it still tasting ok and have a nice texture? if so i'd say keep using it. :)
 

KathyW

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if you cut off the stuff that is tender is it still tasting ok and have a nice texture? if so i'd say keep using it. :)
We went ahead and cut the veins out and washed and stored the leafy part of the the leaves. I tasted the leaf and it wasn't bitter. For all intents and purposes it seems edible. Thank you so much flowerbug for your help.
 

KathyW

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Butterhead lettuce is a very nice choice for salads.

Most any leaf toughens with age. The newer leaves may yet be tender, lower older leaves may be past their prime. Personally, I don't eat many leafy greens raw. Somewhere along the line, I discovered stir-fries. There are leafy greens that can be prepared in about the same way that you wouldn't find in an Asian restaurant.

Lettuce. Take a look at a recipe for "wilted lettuce." You can either make a hot oil type sauce and pour it over the lettuce or take the lettuce and put it right in the skillet. I first had that when I was about 20 years old, at an old lady's house. Wilted Lettuce - she fried bacon until it was crisp, set it aside. The lettuce went in the the hot skillet in the bacon fat. The bacon was crumbled and sprinkled on top before serving. Kind of old lettuce, fully mature anyway ... It may be the best way for you to use what you now have. And, you can use a vegetable oil instead of bacon fat ;).

Steve
Thank you so much Steve! I'm truly a novice. I was raised eating ONLY from the store, but I don't care to depend on the store, and I want to know exactly what I'm feeding my family. Thanks :)
 

so lucky

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Butterhead lettuce is a very nice choice for salads.

Most any leaf toughens with age. The newer leaves may yet be tender, lower older leaves may be past their prime. Personally, I don't eat many leafy greens raw. Somewhere along the line, I discovered stir-fries. There are leafy greens that can be prepared in about the same way that you wouldn't find in an Asian restaurant.

Lettuce. Take a look at a recipe for "wilted lettuce." You can either make a hot oil type sauce and pour it over the lettuce or take the lettuce and put it right in the skillet. I first had that when I was about 20 years old, at an old lady's house. Wilted Lettuce - she fried bacon until it was crisp, set it aside. The lettuce went in the the hot skillet in the bacon fat. The bacon was crumbled and sprinkled on top before serving. Kind of old lettuce, fully mature anyway ... It may be the best way for you to use what you now have. And, you can use a vegetable oil instead of bacon fat ;).

Steve
Once leaf lettuce starts tasting bitter, wilted is the only way I can eat it. My mom used to put a little vinegar and sugar in the skillet with the bacon grease, stirring it up before it is poured over the lettuce. Yum.
 

flowerbug

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We went ahead and cut the veins out and washed and stored the leafy part of the the leaves. I tasted the leaf and it wasn't bitter. For all intents and purposes it seems edible. Thank you so much flowerbug for your help.
you're welcome and i'm glad you didn't have to throw away something you could use instead. :)
 
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