Red leaf lettuce

About: Red leaf lettuce forms loose bouquets of broad green and red leaves that ruffle along the edges. It has a delicate, crisp texture and a mild flavor.

Season: Spring-Fall

Storage: Wrapped in towels in an airtight box or bag in the fridge.

Cleaning: Handle lettuce with care; it's sensitive and bruises easily. Cut off the base and separate the leaves. Plunge leaves gently into a bowl or sink of cold water (several times if it's dirty). Spin in a salad spinner or lay between towels to dry.

Pairings: Light dressings, like my favorite vinaigrette.

Recipes: With tender, delicate leaf lettuce there's nothing better than a salad dressed simply with oil and vinegar at the end of a meal. Of course, you can add more things to jazz it up if you'd like, but use a gentle hand (save the creamy and pungent dressings for romaine). Here are a few ideas:

Leafy green salad with pickled beets, quinoa, and oregano