Grilled Romaine Salad

By Wendy Monro

I am a long time lover of all kinds of salads. I enjoy salads for any meal. I love to experiment with dressings and usually make my own. Lately, I make most of my dressings oil free. If I do use oil, it’s just a little olive oil. Sometimes, I just squeeze on lemon or balsamic vinegar.

There are so many ways to make a delicious salad. I like a salad for breakfast, as weird as that sounds. I like tabouleh salad, cous cous salad, quinoa salad, bean salad, and salads with any type of lettuce.

Recently, I have developed a new passion for Romaine lettuce. I have always loved a Caesar salad. The deep green color of the long leaves and the crispy texture of the Romaine in a Caesar salad is unbelievably good. Then, I realized that Romaine doesn’t have to be for Caesar salads alone. Why not enjoy Romaine lettuce in many other ways?

I started putting Romaine lettuce into my juices. Yes, I have really gotten into juicing and usually start my day with a large glass of vegetable juice.

A juice shop opened up down the street and they sell amazing juices for $10 a piece. I have had one and then I couldn’t get myself to buy a glass of $10 juice ever again. I told Claud how much I loved these juices because they make them with tons of vegetables and garlic and ginger. These are things that don’t do well in a regular blender. I wanted juice, not a smoothie. I didn’t have a spare $200 to get a juicer either. That day, Claud and Daphne went to Goodwill and found a juicer for $15. Don’t worry, I sanitized it.

I have been a juicing fool ever since. I love it so much. I started putting heads of Romaine into my juice. I had so much Romaine that I wanted to come up with other uses. I love to grill all types of vegetables and fruits. Grilling the Romaine seemed like a good idea.

I figured any way I eat the lettuce is a good idea since it is so packed with nutrients. Not all lettuces have the nutritional benefits of a head of Romaine lettuce. The vitamins, minerals and fiber found in romaine lettuce are especially great. Romaine lettuce is 17 percent protein. It is also a complete protein, which means it has all eight essential amino acids. A head of Romaine contains 7.7 grams of protein. That’s pretty amazing. Romaine lettuce is also rich in calcium, Omega-3s, iron, and B vitamins.

Like most lettuces, Romaine has a low calorie content and high water volume. In addition, it is packed with vitamins. A head of Romaine lettuce contains vitamin A, vitamin K and folate. There are many minerals in Romaine as well: manganese, potassium, copper and iron. One head of Romaine lettuce contains more vinamin C than an average orange.

So, I turned on my grill pan and chopped the heads of Romaine into big chunks. After a drizzle of olive oil, a little lemon juice, salt and pepper, I threw these onto the grill pan. It only took a few minutes to grill them all of the way through. I removed them from the grill and placed them onto a plate. You could top these with whatever salad toppings you prefer. I added beans, tomatoes, olives and onions. Then, I drizzled on some balsamic vinegar.

Claud and I ate these on a lazy Saturday. It was so good. I absolutely love the flavor of the grilled Romaine.

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