Lettuce lost its zing? Here’s how to cheer it up!

How to cheer up lettuce

Summer is here and you’re wishing that summer dress wasn’t so tight. If only the weather had turned warmer, sooner you might have been able to do something about it. Well, do not despair!

That good old summer favourite SALAD is here and with a bit of imagination you can add not only a zing but help some of those inches slide away. Read on for ideas on how to cheer up lettuce.


It’s not just lettuce

The basis of a salad is usually leaf but with so many varieties out there you can ring the changes and with it, the flavour and colours. Whether it is peppery radicchio with its red veins or the fluffy endive, you can creative a different masterpiece every time and cater for the tastes within the family This list shows just what is available out there.

As this picture of red chard I spotted in Normandy shows it can be pretty effective as part of a floral arrangement too!



What do you fancy?

We are lovers of the French way of life and have adopted their passion for large bowls of salad that are a meal in themselves. The ingredients you add to the basics can be whatever is in the larder or the fridge or you can buy specific items that you fancy.


A selection of starters

Some of these ‘entrees’ were big enough to make me question the sense of ordering a ‘plat’. The ingredients again show the variety that can make up a salad.


‘Plats’ to make the mouth water!

How to cheer up lettuce


Salade Normand – Leaf tomatoes, fried potatoes, ham and camembert toasted on bread topped off with slices of apple

How to cheer up lettuce





This delicious bowl had eggs, ham, Emmental and rice on top of the basics.



Both of these dishes had a ‘substantial’ ingredient – bread and rice – which took it from being an accompaniment to a main course.


You needn’t go to France!

Salad bowls are becoming a regular feature in our supermarkets nowadays and you can’t miss the bright packaging from Steve’s Leaves a company passionate about nature-friendly farming. Their range of baby salad leaves is packed in ‘pillow’ bags of 60g which keep the leaves fresh and are in a quantity which is ideal for 1 or 2 helping to reduce waste.

I was invited to try a new addition to their extensive range – salad bowls. They arrived well package and the containers had lots of information on them and the contents were surprisingly fresh from their journey.


PicMonkey Collage

Obviously, they could be eaten from the bowls as part of the on-the-go image. However, as a fork is not provided, the lunch-time market may not be their main aim.

Hubby and I sat down to share them and in market research style, I asked for his opinion.


Terrific Thai salad:Steve's leaves

Contained pea shoots, baby spinach, confetti coriander and small red chard plus dried mango and coconut pieces, carrot sticks with a chilli and lemon grass dressing.

Opinion: Lovely flavour and quite a tang to it


Perfect ploughman’s salad:

Steve's leaves

Contained red frilly mustard, green Batavia, mizuna leaves plus cheddar chunks, rustic crackers, pearl onions, mini gherkins and pickle dressing

Opinion: Tastes like a ploughman’s lunch and has got all the ingredients.


We really enjoyed our tasting session although we both agreed that it could probably do with something say a bread roll or to be used as an accompaniment to meat or fish. Maybe we are big eaters!

Hopefully, this post has given you some ideas to perk up your salads, explore the variety of leaves out there and tickle your taste buds.

What are your favourite combinations? Tell us how you cheer up lettuce in the comments below.





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  • Pondside

    I’m a great believer in ‘cook once, eat twice’ so when we barbecue I always do a little extra and then make something like a ‘Black and Blue Salad’ with blue cheese, greens and sliced cold steak. If I have leftover chicken I might serve it on a bed of greens with a little cold rice, dressed with mayonnaise whipped with a bit of lemon juice, cream and curry powder or curry paste.

  • Some tasty ideas there, thank you!

  • I’m a Greek Salad kind of girl Olives, Feta ,Tomato, Cucumber, olive oil dressing. Just need a return of the good weather to enjoy it.

  • Some tasty looking treats here Julia, I love the fresh food in France, it often makes our look a bit lame. I must say I’ve gone off the bags of leaves I used to love because of the bad press recently. Silly I know and I expect by next summer I’ll have forgotten, especially as buying any alternatives can be wasteful.

  • I like salads that are a little different, i like the ones above with apple and different types of cheese in them, also a big fan of salads with raisons, peas and rice and never with tomatoes as i’m allergic to them.

  • We are always looking for new ingredients for salads, so I will share this with my wife. For me, the process is to tip everything into the bowl and then snip with a pair of kitchen scissors to chop it down to size – it keeps my wife entertained.

    While we don’t have the multiple stomachs nor the enzymes to extract all the goodness, elephants, sheep, hippopotami, and many other animals eat nothing but leaves – and look at the size they grow to.

  • I love salad but live in a household where on 2 out of the 4 of us will eat it which makes it a nice treat when i do insist. The pics you have shared are amazing and i would happily sit there munching my through them all. Do you have any tips for keeping the leaf salads fresh as ours seem to go off in a few days which is quite frustrating.

    • Keeping leaf fresh is a real problem so we tend to shop more often even if it’s just to grab a bag. The smaller sizes aren’t too bad if you get a sell buy date for a few days later. I often open the packet to let the water out. Do they freeze them before they put them out on the shelves I wonder?

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