Harvest of the Month: Salad Greens

—Courtesy Island Grown Initiative

This month’s harvest, salad greens, is one of the most diverse and versatile crops of the year. Open up a seed catalog or visit the farmer’s market, and be dazzled by the variety of lettuces, from butterhead to romaine, to iceberg, to ‘Little Gem’ and more. If you want to broaden your salads beyond lettuce, there are also arugula, mizuna, baby kale, tatsoi, sorrel, and so much more! Grow something new to put in your salads this year, or try a new green from a local farmer.

There are endless ways to incorporate salad greens into your meals. Chop some sorrel and add it to fried rice. Arugula is delicious on avocado toast with a fried local egg. Add lettuce to your tacos for some freshness and crunch. Experiment and enjoy the variety, color, texture, and flavor of the various leafy greens.

Salad Roll-Ups
Recipe by Robin Forte

8 large lettuce leaves, washed and dried
2 oz. rice noodles, cooked
8 oz. shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced, cooked and cooled
1-2 carrots, grated (approx. ¾ cup)
¼ lb. cooked chopped chicken, shrimp, or tofu
bean sprouts
mint leaves, chives, cilantro

Lay out a lettuce leaf. Top the leaf with a pinch of cooked noodles, a few pieces of cooked mushrooms, follow with a pinch of the grated carrot, a pinch of your protein of choice, and a pinch of bean sprouts, and finish with the fresh herbs. You don’t want to overfill your lettuce leaf, or it will be difficult to roll! Roll up egg-roll-style; cut the stem of the leaf if it impedes rolling.

Serve with dipping sauce.

Dipping Sauce

2 Tbsp. hot water
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. tamarind paste, apricot jam, or orange marmalade
2 tsp. Asian fish sauce
1 tsp. cilantro, minced
1 tsp. jalapeño (optional)

Mix all ingredients until combined.