Well I like to use Romaine lettuce because it is readily available and it keeps crisp longer than some others. I buy the bulk bags from Sam's Club in the summer time, but in the winter I usually buy smaller amounts at the grocery store. So how do I get my greens cold and crunchy? I wash and soak them in ice water after chopping!
We all have to wash the lettuce anyway, so ... what? You DO WASH your lettuce right?? I mean come on, with all the e coli scares, and so forth? You have to wash it. Notice your lettuce probably doesn't have a lot of bug eaten leaves, therefore the farmer probably uses some sort of insecticide. If you don't wash it - it's still there! And what about the color of your lettuce? Is it green? Then more than likely it has received some fertilizer too, and yes, it's probably still there!
Oh? You buy only organic? That's good. Cow manure and compost are organic fertilizers too, so wash the lettuce really good please! (Compost is well... see the picture?) Since your going to wash it, you may as well give it an ice bath to get it cold and crisp too!
|Source of Compost pile|
Fill the bowl with cold water and swirl and swish the lettuce with your hand. Kind of like the agitator on your washing machine. Then add ice cubes to the water - just enough to get the water really cold. (10 cubes or so)
Let the ice set on the lettuce for about thirty minutes, or until the ice is melted.
Then remove the strainer from the bowl over the sink. Pour out the water, and return the strainer back to the bowl and SPIN AWAY. The little black button there is the brake. Use it to stop the spinner. Pour out the excess water and repeat one more time.
Then you have nice cold, crisp lettuce leaves ready for your basic salad. If you are not ready to use then place entire bowl in the fridge. When possible refrigerate your bowls or plates before serving as well. (No, I don't always get to do that, but it really makes a difference - I just don't have a big enough fridge!)