Why is Lettuce Crunchy?

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Have you ever thought about why lettuce is crunchy? Then you have come to the right article. Besides that, we also discuss in this article what can be done to keep lettuce crunchy, as well as other relevant questions. Read on to learn more!

Why is Lettuce Crunchy?

Lettuce is naturally fresh and crunchy because of the water in it which causes pressure in the leaves’ cells. However, when it is stored and the water in it evaporates, the leaves will eventually shrink causing it to not be as crunchy anymore.

How do you Keep Lettuce Crunchy?

There are different ways to keep lettuce crunchy and fresh.  

One is to separate the leaves by cutting off the end of the stem.

When washing the lettuce, you may use cold water where you could submerge the leaves. After washing it, dry it by using a salad spinner or simply, paper towels to absorb the excess water.

Make sure that the leaves are not completely dry but a little damp. You may put the lettuce in a colander or any container that lets allows airflow into the lettuce. Additionally, you may set it on a plate to catch the excess drainage. If stored this way for about thirty minutes, the lettuce will be back to being crunchy and can be kept as such for three to five days. 

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How does Soaking Lettuce in Water Make it Crunchy?

As mentioned above, what causes lettuce to be crunchy is the water in the leaves causing pressure in the cells. Conversely, when the water in it has evaporated, the lettuce is no longer as crunchy and can even get wilted and limp.

Hence, soaking the lettuce in cold tap water makes it crunchy again. Doing this will return bring back the water into the cells which is what’s needed for the leaves to look healthy and firm again.

Which Lettuce is Crunchy?

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Most varieties of lettuce are pretty crunchy. The most common favorites because of their crunchiness are iceberg and romaine. Iceberg lettuce is probably the crunchiest, in fact, many people like it not because of its flavor but because of the crunchy quality it adds to your salad.

What’s great about iceberg lettuce is that it can last long in the fridge because of its very high water content. Romaine lettuce is another such favorite. You can find the crunchiest part of this variety near the center.

Wrap-up

Lettuce is a salad favorite because of its crunchy texture caused by the pressure of the water in the leaves’ cells. Hence, you can easily bring back this crunchiness in wilted leaves by soaking the leaves in cold tap water and storing it properly to bring back water in the cells. The crunchiest lettuce varieties are iceberg and romaine, both of which pair very well with other salad staples.

For a demonstration on how to keep lettuce fresh and crunchy, here’s a video from YouTube channel Cooking Guide:

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