ABC SUPERFOODS: I is for Iceberg Lettuce

Iceberg Lettuce

Benefits
Iceberg’s texture and crunchiness make up for its apparent lack of flavor. And though other leafy greens may be more nutritionally dense, iceberg is still a good source of calcium, iron, potassium, Vitamin K, Vitamin A, and fiber. One cup of iceberg lettuce contains a mere 11 calories, so for individuals wanting to lose weight, it is an optimum food choice. You can add it to nearly any meal and it will fill you up without adding the extra calories. Are you prone to anemia? If so, it would benefit you to eat iceberg often since it is high in iron. The 35 micrograms of Vitamin K in each cup of iceberg lettuce supports blood clots, which is essential to stop bleeding when your tissues have been damaged. Both the Vitamin K and Vitamin A that iceberg lettuce offers will help your skeletal system, as it reduces your risk for osteoporosis as you age and maintains bone growth.

At the Market
-This is the most commonly available type of lettuce found in any market as it is grown year round.
-Avoid wilted or discolored heads of lettuce.
-If the head seems very hard when squeezed gently, it is probably a sign that it is inwardly afflicted. However, avoid overly soft heads of lettuce, as well.

In the Kitchen
-Place unwashed and uncut lettuce in tin foil and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
-If you don’t plan to use the lettuce immediately, tear the leaves rather than using a knife to avoid discoloring.
-Use rigid iceberg leaves as alternatives to wraps or braise the leaves in a small amount of stock to try something different.
-After washing, allow leaves to dry thoroughly when desiring to make salad since the dressing will stick to the leaves better.
-Traditionally, iceberg is cut into wedges when used for salads.

Recipe

Iceberg Lettuce Tacos
1 large head Iceberg Lettuce, cored than cut into quarters
1 (10 oz.) bag shredded Cheddar cheese
4 Scallions, chopped
1 cup chopped green Olives with Pimentos
Beef Filling:
1 tablespoon extra virgin Olive oil
1 pound ground Sirloin
1 small yellow Onion, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, chopped
1/2 Red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Chili powder
Salt and Pepper, to taste
1/2 cup Tomato sauce

iceberg

For beef: Add oil to skillet over medium-high heat and brown meat. Add onions, garlic, red peppers, and season with Worcestershire, chili powder, salt and pepper. Cook mixture 5 minutes more, then add tomato sauce, stir to combine and turn off heat.

Serve filling in bowl with lettuce, scallions, cheese and olives along side. Take piece of lettuce and cut a scoop of filling on top, garnish with scallions, cheese, and olives, then fold up and eat.

(Recipe by Rachael Ray, Food Network).

What recipes do you like to use iceberg lettuce for?

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