BY CHERAMIE SONNIER
Local and area farmers markets have plenty of lettuces available now — thanks to the use of greenhouses.
Tender butterhead lettuces are a particular favorite of shoppers. The leaves of butter lettuces form a tightly folded head with sweet, delicate buttery flavor.
A butter, or Bibb, lettuce with deep red-tinged leaves is attracting attention at the Red Stick Farmers Market.
The butter lettuces are low in calories and sodium. They are also a good source of thiamin, riboflavin, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus and are a very good source of dietary fiber, vitamins A, C, K and B6, along with folate, iron, potassium and manganese, nutrition sources say.
Anna Dominguez, whose family raises lettuces in greenhouses at Papa John’s Family Farm near Ponchatoula, says to remember that lettuces with dark red and darker green leaves contain the most nutrients.
Because the butterhead lettuces’ leaves are quite tender, they should be gently handled and washed. Store wrapped in a plastic bag in the refrigerate for three to five days.
— Cheramie Sonnier