Stir fried lettuce

Stir Fried Romain Lettuce

I know… it sounds weird, most of us are put-off when the lettuce goes all wilty in a sandwich, but when the right kind of lettuce is quickly sauteed over high heat it makes a delicious vegetable side dish. It retains its crisp texture and the greens become almost fluorescent in color. The part I like best is that the bitterness of the lettuce fades away while the sweetness is brought forward.

When cooking lettuce it’s important to use the right kind. Soft pillowy lettuce like butterleaf isn’t well suited for being cooked. Your best bet is to use crisp lettuce with a firm stem like Romaine or Iceberg. While iceberg will work just fine, I tend to find its flavor almost non-existent, so really you just want to get a nice head of Romaine lettuce.

As for seasonings, you could go “Italian” with some olive oil, salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon to serve, or “Chinese” with a dollop of oyster sauce, or in my case, I used the braising liquid from my buta kakuni with a bit of cornstarch for a more “Japanese” flavor.

2 tsp vegetable oil
5 leaves of Romaine lettuce washed and well dried then cut into 1″ strips
1/4 C braising liquid from buta kakuni
1 tsp corn starch
dash of white pepper

Dissolve the cornstarch and white pepper in the braising liquid.

Get a saute pan very hot over high heat then add the oil. Quickly add the lettuce to the pan. The leaves should keep the oil from spattering too much, but be careful none-the-less.

Use the pan to toss the lettuce until it is bright green (about a minute). Add the liquid, tossing to coat. As soon as the sauce thickens (shouldn’t take more than a couple tosses) it’s done and should be served immediately (if it sits, it will get watery and soggy).

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  • http://voodoolily.blogspot.com/ Heather

    I like stir-fried lettuce. I love when it gets all wilty under a pile of vermicelli noodles with shrimp and nuoc cham all soaking in. I like cucumbers in hot food, too.

  • http://voodoolily.blogspot.com Heather

    I like stir-fried lettuce. I love when it gets all wilty under a pile of vermicelli noodles with shrimp and nuoc cham all soaking in. I like cucumbers in hot food, too.

  • http://newlywedcooking.blogspot.com/ sharon

    anything like bok choy? I do like crisp spinach that’s often served in Italian restaurants. I’d love to try this as well!

  • http://newlywedcooking.blogspot.com sharon

    anything like bok choy? I do like crisp spinach that’s often served in Italian restaurants. I’d love to try this as well!

  • Diana

    This is a great idea! I have never thought of stir frying lettuce but it sounds and look delicious. I will try it tonight!

  • Diana

    This is a great idea! I have never thought of stir frying lettuce but it sounds and look delicious. I will try it tonight!

  • http://veggie-terrain.blogspot.com/ jd

    That’s such a pretty picture!

    I’ve actually heard of stir-fried lettuce before, but I’ve never had it, so I’m excited to try your recipe!

    Thanks – it sounds (& looks) great!

  • http://veggie-terrain.blogspot.com jd

    That’s such a pretty picture!

    I’ve actually heard of stir-fried lettuce before, but I’ve never had it, so I’m excited to try your recipe!

    Thanks – it sounds (& looks) great!

  • Marc

    Heather, I’ve always been curious about cooking cucumbers but haven’t gotten much beyond cucumbers on hot rice. Any suggestions on cooking cukes?

    Sharon, when I wrote this post I was trying to think of what it’s similar to, but honestly there’s no good comparison, it’s less dense and more crisp than bok choy. Though I guess the leafy part is similar.

    Thanks Diana, I hope it turned out well.

    JD, thanks let us know how it goes:-)

  • Marc

    Heather, I’ve always been curious about cooking cucumbers but haven’t gotten much beyond cucumbers on hot rice. Any suggestions on cooking cukes?

    Sharon, when I wrote this post I was trying to think of what it’s similar to, but honestly there’s no good comparison, it’s less dense and more crisp than bok choy. Though I guess the leafy part is similar.

    Thanks Diana, I hope it turned out well.

    JD, thanks let us know how it goes:-)

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  • http://twitter.com/chiyochew aimee

    omg I can't believe you love this as much as I do!! I ate stir fried lettuce with peas and sugar snaps in a fine dining, chinese resturaunt once. I was hooked from the first bite and began eating bowls of it at home. . .Can't wait to try your recipe!

Welcome!

I'm Marc, and I want to teach you some basic techniques and give you the confidence and inspiration so that you can cook without recipes too!

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Katsudon (pork cutlet rice bowl)
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No Recipes Vol. 19 – ¡Viva España!