Thursday, June 6, 2013

Keepin' it Green: Lettuce Burritos!

I picked up my first CSA box of the season yesterday!!  
(Really, it is the second box of the season, but my share partner got the first box last week since I am "sharing a share" this year.) 

Here it is:
CSA Week #2, Wed. June 5th, 2013: 
This is all certified organic produce from Honey Brook Organic Farm.
Bottom row, from left to right: Romaine Lettuce, Snap peas, Strawberries, Dandelion Greens, Arugula, 
Back row: Baby Bok Choy (center back), Boston Lettuce, Red Lettuce, Spinach hidden in the back in a bag and KALE!!

This is a nice, diverse haul with varied goodies.  Yeay! (But no garlic scapes, boo! Hopefully soon!)

Kay, so you have to wash and prep your leafies for proper storage.  

This year, I'm going to try out a "lettuce burrito" style storage wrap and see how long it holds up.  I find that the single layer-type wrap where you add the lettuce to the center of the towel and roll the towel around the lettuce doesn't work that well.  So, I developed the Lettuce Burrito!

I highly recommend you invest in the biggest, best salad spinner you can put your hands on.  I like the big, Oxo spinner for CSA duty.  (I also have the small one from my apartment dwelling city days!)
The big Oxo spinner.  I love her!

To Make Your Very Own Lettuce Burrito:

1. Wash your lettuce leaves.  I just rip off each leaf and rinse it under cold water.  It's surprisingly fast and kinda fun to do it this way, you really connect with your leafies!  Alternately, gently place several leaves in a big bowl of cold water and swish them around.  Let the dirt settle to the bottom and then *lift the leaves out* do NOT "strain" or "drain" the leaves because the dirt from the bottom will just get all over them again :-) Rinse them again if they are still sandy.

2. Place the washed leaves in a single layer in the spinner.  DO NOT OVERFILL.
If you load the spinner with more than one layer, the water from the inner leaves will just spin out onto the outer leaves.  Believe me.

3.  Spin! Fun for kids and adults.  
Use the black button stopper to stop the basket.  This will push even more water out of your greens with some extra centrifugal force.  If the greens still look wet, move them around placing them in a single layer again and re-spin.

4. Place dry leaves on a paper towel and make a Lettuce Burrito!

Hold the lettuce down while you roll it again. 

Keep going until you come to the end of the towel.
Wha-la!  If you use longer paper towels, you can roll up a much bigger burrito.

Now, carefully slide your lettuce burritos into a big zipper bag.  I used the huge, two gallon ones and could fit two burritos in there.  Here are my Romaine Burritos:
Seal the bag and store your lettuce burritos in your fridge.

Eat and enjoy! 

I'll let you guys know how long the lettuces held up with this style of storage.
I burrito-ed the Boston, Red and Romaine lettuces as well as the spinach.

*Update as of 6/28/13: The Boston and Red lettuces lasted two weeks, and the Romaine lasted very close to two and a half weeks in the burrito! Oh yeah.*