Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Technique: Coring Iceberg Lettuce

Yeah, yeah, I know. Like chopping onions. Everybody already knows how to do this. Unless, of course, you don’t . . .

First, open the plastic wrapper. For years, I tried to figure out how to unwrap one of these things. But every time I got close to the secret, the lettuce barons changed their approach. So, don’t pull, or twist, or slide your fingers underneath. Just grab a pair of scissors, and whack off the top (bottom?) of that plastic. Remove the head of lettuce.

Save the wrapper!! If it’s dirty (on the inside), give it a rinse and a rub to get the dirt off, then let it drain. Then, line it with a paper towel.

Cut open the lettuce wrapper

Now give that lettuce a good long rinse under cold running water. Maybe even gently rub your hands around the outer surface and let any loosely wrapped leaves just fall off. When your head is pristine, set it, core side down, in the sink or on the counter, to drain for five minutes or so.

Wash your head

While the head drains, seek out ‘the sturdy spot’ near your sink, or along your countertop. You want the place that is supported by an upright 2x4.

Got it?

OK. Pick up the lettuce, and smash it, core side down, onto that sturdy point.

Smash your head

Voila. The core has popped loose. Give it a twist, and yank it out.

Yank your core

Place your head (lettuce, that is) into the paper towel lined plastic wrapper and toss it in the fridge. You’re done!

Wrap your head


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