Did you know that lettuce is one of the most widely consumed vegetables in the world? It is essentially a useful food for making delicious salads, but it is also recognized for the benefits it brings to the human body. First of all, a natural source of dietary fiber capable of regulating intestinal transit and improving stomach health.
Additionally, it can relieve pain in the muscles thanks to its calming and sedative effects, which in turn keep the nerves under control and prevent insomnia. Eating lettuce on a regular basis provides the body with the antioxidants it needs to prevent premature aging and reduce cholesterol levels.
Its trace elements help prevent different types of cancer, which is why it has become a valuable vegetable on the market. But currently, there are different types of lettuce and today we will tell you what they are and what they are for.
What are the different types of lettuce?
These are the types of lettuce that you can find in any supermarket for the preparation of delicious and nutritious salads, or any other recipe.
1. Romaine lettuce
This is one of the best known lettuces. Its leaves are long, as is its midrib, but it is also characterized by its excessively crunchy texture and bitter taste. It is known as Spanish lettuce and donkey’s ear, but the best thing is that you can get it both in autumn and in summer.
This type of lettuce can be eaten raw, making it perfect for a delicious Caesar salad . If you chop it into very fine pieces, it can be an excellent accompaniment to toasts. Use it in stews or soups if you prefer to cook them for consumption.
2. French lettuce
If there is something to know about this type of lettuce, it is that unlike romaine, it has a much sweeter flavor, although quite intense. You can also get it by the name of Boston or Trocadero and it is possible to recognize it at first glance by the intense green of its leaves, by its brightness and softness.
It is mainly used in fresh salads, but it is also extremely useful in sandwiches. It is important to know that spring is the best season for its harvest, as it is when it guarantees a much more palatable flavor.
3. Curly lettuce
It is known that way from the curly shape of its leaves. They stay that way, even after development. It is one of the most popular lettuces with a bitter taste on the market, but it is also one of the cheapest. You will easily find it in any supermarket.
It is ideal to combine with other vegetables for delicious fresh salads. It is that curly lettuce guarantees an unmistakable bitter taste and a rough texture, which will feel much more when consumed alone.
4. Iceberg lettuce
This type of lettuce can be easily recognized by the spherical shape of its leaves. It is common in most supermarkets, so it is possible to buy it without complications and at a good price. The Iceberg lettuce to which we refer is characterized by being compact and crunchy.
Unlike the others of the same species, this one lacks large amounts of nutrients. For this reason, it is recommended to choose the one with darker leaves and combine with other vegetables for salads. In Mexico it is useful for the preparation of tacos and tostadas.
5. Nasturtium lettuce
Its rounded shape is similar to iceberg lettuce. One of its main characteristics is that it can be grown throughout the year, making it one of the most resistant vegetables to weather conditions.
The best are its large leaves and with a much meatier appearance, which is why they are perfect in a delicious fresh salad, May queen and trocadero salad. To improve its flavor, you can add other vegetables to the dish.
6. Batavia lettuce
It is very similar to French lettuce, but it is much more delicate and fragile, which is why it oxidizes more quickly after cutting it. How to identify a Batavia lettuce ? It is easy, because it has slightly curly leaves, with a very light green color and a crunchy texture.
Some varieties such as Matinale, Vico and Boavista are harvested during the winter month. However, there are types from Batavia that you will find only in summer. Consume them in salads that include a vinaigrette, to which you can add a little nuts to improve its flavor and texture.
7. Oak Lettuce
It is one of the most striking types thanks to the unmistakable color that can vary between green and red. It is very common during the summer and spring season when it is usually a bit warmer. One of its most representative qualities is its sweet taste, which makes it perfect for consumption in salads.
The preparations that include the leaves of oak lettuce are better if you add a little vinaigrette, fresh cheese and preserves. If you want to get it, you can go directly to a supermarket and choose the one of your preference.
8. Endive Lettuce
For those who enjoy much stronger flavors in salads, Escarole lettuce is an excellent alternative. It has a much spicier and bitter taste, perfect for much more risky and versatile palates. Even so, endive can be a very delicious vegetable.
It is ideal for fresh salads, to which you can add a little cherry tomatoes and cheeses with strong flavor and aromas. This lettuce is available, especially during the winter, so when this season arrives, it goes to the nearest establishment to purchase it.
Who can imagine a salad without lettuce? Surely no one, so this vegetable has gained a lot in popularity. The best thing is that you can find it at any time of the year, so its consumption continues to increase.
It is perfect for those fresh summer salads , which you can enhance with any other ingredient. Choose the type of lettuce of your choice and create the best recipes to enjoy at home, while you pamper your palate.