Dinner Diva | Turning over a new leaf

One of my favorite sayings is “turning over a new leaf,” and today as I was thinking about it, it made sense to me in a new way. It’s time we all started “turning over a new leaf,” as in lettuce and leafy greens.
Iceberg lettuce is one of the mainstays in salad making that has frustrated me for a long time. No wonder people don’t like salads, or else smother them in fatty dressings! All they know is that see-thru lettuce as the foundation for their salad. You’ve seen them before in cafeterias, restaurants and in the bag in the grocery store: hunks of insipid lettuce interspersed with thin strips of red cabbage and a wayward carrot shred or two—not too appetizing.

But we do eat this “salad” just because it’s “healthy,” or so we think. And yet the flavor is nearly nonexistent, and the texture isn’t pleasing either. I haven’t even mentioned the nutritional facts yet. With Iceberg, nearly nil. Why bother?

Forgive me for bashing a poor, defenseless head of lettuce, but I’ve got a good point here: to eat healthy doesn’t have to be a boring and tasteless experience! Even when it comes to lettuce, there are indeed other options—tasty ones in fact. So let’s literally “turn over a new leaf,” shall we? Here are some new choices for your salad foundation, with a description beside each one:

– Butterhead lettuce: Boston and Bibb are two well known types. These lettuces have round smallish heads with delicate rich flavor.
– Red Leaf lettuce: Can also be called Red Oak Leaf. A tender lettuce with dark red in the leaf and a lovely, full-flavored taste.
– Green Leaf lettuce: Can also be called Green Oak Leaf. This is a little heartier than the Red Leaf and the flavor a little more bitter.
– Romaine lettuce: Sometimes you can buy Red Romaine, but it’s less available than regular green Romaine. This is a hearty lettuce that is standard stuff for Cesar salads and stands up well to a lots of ingredients and a good tossing.

There you go—some standard lettuces to help you expand your salad repertoire. Next week, we’ll talk about some delicious salad “add ins”!

Salads are such a wonderful way to get your nutrients in—remember, the more colorful your salad, the healthier it is. Enjoy!


For more help putting dinner on your table, check out Leanne’s website, www.SavingDinner.com, or her Saving Dinner book series (Ballantine) and her New York Times bestselling book Body Clutter (Fireside). Copyright 2009 Leanne Ely. Used by permission in this publication.

uva basketball team of destiny

Team of Destiny: Inside UVA Basketball's improbable run

Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25.

The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018, and how coach Tony Bennett and his team used that loss as the source of strength, through to the ACC regular-season championship, the run to the Final Four, and the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.


Augusta Free Press content is available for free, as it has been since 2002, save for a disastrous one-month experiment at putting some content behind a pay wall back in 2009. (We won’t ever try that again. Almost killed us!) That said, it’s free to read, but it still costs us money to produce. The site is updated several times a day, every day, 365 days a year, 366 days on the leap year. (Stuff still happens on Christmas Day, is what we’re saying there.) AFP does well in drawing advertisers, but who couldn’t use an additional source of revenue? From time to time, readers ask us how they can support us, and we usually say, keep reading. Now we’re saying, you can drop us a few bucks, if you’re so inclined.


augusta free press
augusta free press

augusta free press
augusta free press news