As Summer approaches, you may have a desire to eat a little lighter and enjoy all the crisp, refreshing organic salad greens from your local farmers’ market.
Did you know that lettuces are:
- Good sources of minerals such as magnesium & potassium; along vitamins C, beta carotene, and folate.
- The word lettuce comes from the Latin lacteus, which means milk; referring to its milky substance when cut into.
- Lettuces started as a weed in the Mediterranean area and has been enjoyed as culinary green for over 4,500 years.
- If you have a restless infant, draw a warm bath and add in some organic lettuce leaves. It will calm the child and make her sleepy.
This is a tried and true folk remedy from Mexico. Of course, this can work on an adult too, but you’ll need a lot more lettuce leaves!
How can this be, you ask?! Well, lettuces contain a mild opiate which aids relaxation and sleep. For this reason, the Romans, Egyptians and French ate salads at the end of a meal.
Here’s a ridiculously easy salad dressing for you to try:
The 15-Second Dressing
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. honey or maple syrup
1/4 tsp. sea salt (I prefer celtic sea salt)
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh herbs, such as dill, parsley, or mint (optional)
or 1 Tbsp. minced shallot (optional)
Place all the ingredients in a clean glass jar. (A recycled peanut butter or jam jar is perfect for this task.) Screw on the lid securely and shake vigorously for 15 seconds. (OK, let me be clear here. You shake the jar up and down vigorously and not yourself.)
Magically, you now have an emulsified dressing to enjoy with your crispy fresh salad. Add in more salt & pepper to taste.
Left over dressing can be stored in the jar for up to a week in the fridge.
This dressing is also very yummy over steamed vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflowers, or green beans.
Please note: those of us who are fashion conscious know that it’s a faux pas to over dress for the occasion. The same goes for a salad. Please DO NOT over dress the delicate, tender, fresh greens by drenching them! Each leaf should be just gently caressed, not smothered.
I’ll be posting descriptions of different types of lettuces and more delicious dressings and salad ideas after I visit my local farmers’ market this weekend.
Let us have lettuce!