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Blog Flog: Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing

Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing

Yes, you can totally grill lettuce! Not just romaine. And it’s stunning. Such a fun alternative to the usual summer salads.

Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing 10

I got a shipment of living lettuce from Inspired Greens last week – gorgeous heads of lettuce grown in Alberta greenhouses and harvested in their pots, sold not in clamshells but in sturdy thin plastic cones, with their roots attached. They’re grown to adolescent size – a bit bigger than baby lettuces, so they stay fresh for ages, especially if you store them in a short glass of water in the fridge. Honestly, I try growing greens in my garden and patio containers with limited success every year – they wilt and bolt and never grow to be big and full and robust – and this is a bit like having a micro-garden on a shelf in my fridge. Far less frustrating.

Inspired greens 5

They say these heads of lettuce contains 3 times the lettuce of a typical grocery store variety. And can we talk for a minute about the miracle of three types of lettuce in one? Up on the right there is the Multileaf Trio – so you can pluck off a few leaves for your sandwich, and have the option of three different varieties? Or make a more interesting salad from one head of lettuce? This was so gorgeous it sat on my kitchen table like a bouquet of flowers all week, and I just plucked off a few leaves as I wanted them.

Inspired greens 1

Inspired Greens asked me to play around with their greens in my kitchen, and I was happy to oblige. I chose heads of red and green Batavia (above) to toss on the grill – these leaves are broad and delicate, yet sturdy enough to toss on a hot burger or grilled chicken sandwich, and held up just fine on the grill, its ruffly tips getting nicely charred over the intense heat. It’s ridiculously simple – just cut away the stem, brush off any residual dirt, and cut the entire head in half lengthwise. Brush the cut side with oil and grill directly on a preheated grill rack until the core is char-marked and the edges are singed. You wind up with this deliciously crunchy, smoky lettuce – it doesn’t cook all the way through – that I doused in a quick, chunky blue cheese dressing. Just about perfect alongside a grilled steak, don’t you think? Far more interesting than a tossed salad, but with similar qualities.

Inspired greens 2Grilled Inspired greens lettuce

You can serve them up on a platter – aim for a quarter or half a head per person – and I love that not one bit of the lettuce is wasted. Next time I’ll try it Caesar-style, with garlicky dressing and crusty bread brushed with olive oil and grilled, then torn over the grilled lettuce, with grilled chicken. Glad this summer is lingering a little longer.

Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing 11

Thanks to a Inspired Greens, launching in Canadian grocery stores now, for supporting this site and bringing more Alberta-grown produce to our tables!

Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing
Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing

Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing

Recipe link

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August 28, 2017

Ingredients

1-2 heads

olive or canola oil, for brushing

salt

Dressing:

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

2 Tbsp sour cream

2 Tbsp heavy cream or half and half

freshly ground black pepper

Directions

1Cut the heads of lettuce off their stems, keeping them intact at their base. Cut in half lengthwise, right through the stem end. Brush away any visible dirt, or run under cool water to get rid of any, and shake loosely to get rid of excess moisture.

2

3Preheat the grill to medium-high and brush the cut sides of the lettuce with oil. Sprinkle with salt. Grill cut side down for a few minutes, flipping once or twice to get a bit of heat on the leafy side, until the cut side is char-marked and the edges of the leaves are charred as well. To make the dressing, whisk together the mayonnaise, blue cheese (save half for sprinkling overtop if you like), sour cream, cream and a grind of pepper. Place the grilled lettuce on a platter and drizzle with the dressing; sprinkle with blue cheese, if you set any aside (or add extra). Serves 4.

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8 comments on “Blog Flog: Grilled Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing

  1. Edith Henneberg
    August 28, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    I love their green butter lettuce!

    • Julie
      August 30, 2017 at 8:56 pm

      Isn’t it gorgeous??

  2. esme
    August 28, 2017 at 11:12 pm

    Oh, Julie! This looks amazingly delicious. I’m adding grilled lettuce to my list of things to try. THANKS.

  3. Jake
    August 29, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    Grilled lettuce is such a great idea, add a grilled peach half to this salad because they are so good right now.

    Cheers,
    Jake

    • Julie
      August 30, 2017 at 8:55 pm

      OOOH, brilliant idea!! or grilled apricots!

  4. Vivian
    August 30, 2017 at 8:36 am

    Inspired Gardens really ARE! I find the three-type bunch the most beautiful and place them on the table like a fine green bouquet too. Clamshells are an insult to greens.

  5. Luna
    September 8, 2017 at 1:06 am

    The lettuce looks so robust! Did you have to wash them before grilling?

    • Julie
      September 9, 2017 at 9:24 am

      I brushed away any excess soil – it was beautiful!

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