Lettuce leaves can instantly amp up the taste and health quotient of so many delicacies like sandwiches, salads, appetizers and what not!
But the biggest challenge with this leafy green is to retain its freshness and crunchy texture, which may seem like a tough task as lettuce leaves tend to lose their texture, when exposed to moisture or air.
Here are some simple ways to keep lettuce fresh for a long time.
1. Wash and dry
An easy way to preserve lettuce leaves is by washing these leaves gently in cold water and ensuring that they are thoroughly dry before storing. Excess moisture can lead to bacterial growth and wilting.
2. Store in a plastic bag
Place the washed and dried lettuce leaves in a food grade plastic bag. You can create small holes in a regular plastic bag using a fork or use special produce bags with built-in perforations. The perforations allow excess moisture to escape, preventing the leaves from becoming soggy.
3. Use paper towels
Line a storage container with paper towels and place the lettuce on top. The paper towels help absorb any remaining moisture and keep the leaves dry. Change the paper towels if they become damp.
4. Chop the stem
Trim the stem ends of the lettuce leaves before storing them. This minimizes moisture loss and prevents the leaves from wilting. You can also seal the container tightly to reduce air circulation and slow down the oxidation process.
5. Avoid exposure to ethylene
Keep lettuce away from ethylene-producing fruits and vegetables, as exposure to this gas can accelerate wilting. Ethylene producers include apples, bananas, and tomatoes.
6. Store in a drawer
Refrigerate the lettuce in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. The crisper drawer helps maintain the right level of humidity for leafy greens.
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