FOOD

Celtuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese Lettuce

Date January 21, 2020 11:58

Celtuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceEmily Li / Shutterstock.com

Don’t tell legumes or nuts, but an underrated superfood is taking the throne. Its name is celtuce. Have you ever heard of it? Maybe you often see celtuce in the grocery store and have no idea how to use it?

While it sounds like something artificial, like a mix of celery and lettuce, celtuce is all-natural and healthy. Celtuce comes from China, where it’s called wosun. This veggie is also known as Chinese lettuce or stem lettuce. Celtuce tastes delicious on its own, in salads and you can create your own recipe for this vegetable.

What is celtuce?

Celtuce is a leafy green vegetable and it has been used in Chinese cuisine for decades. And though it’s the leaves of green vegetables that are usually heaped onto plates, when it comes to celtuce, we should pay attention to the stem. The fresh leaves of celtuce are also edible, however, the leaves are typically wilted by the time the veggies appear in grocery stores.

And what about the stem? What does it look like? The stem usually looks solid and includes the whitish-greenish gnarled outer layer. When it comes to cooking, it can be anything you want it to be. The possibilities are endless: you can use it for the main course or topping. You can eat celtuce raw too.

The texture of celtuce depends on how you prepare. However, this veggie is well-known for its “slightly nutty taste” and “crisp texture.” Celtuce continues to gain popularity and today it is used for dishes all over the world.

Celtuce: nutritional facts

Celtuce is one of the healthiest veggies in the world, as it is low in calories but loaded with essential vitamins and minerals. Celtuce contains iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin C, and B vitamins.

When it comes to manganese, celtuce is a champion as just one cup of celtuce provides 30 percent of the daily value. Manganese is essential for metabolism, calcium absorption, and controlling the level of blood sugars.

Celtuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceJIANG HONGYAN / Shutterstock.com

Here is what you need to know about nutrients and calories.

Calories: 18

Fat: 0.30 g

Protein: 0.85 g

Carbohydrates: 3.65 g

Fiber: 1.7 g

Sodium: 11 mg

Where can you buy celtuce?

If you want to get celtuce for your cooking experiments you can find it at Chinese markets. Sometimes celtuce is available in grocery stores and at farmer markets. You can even try to grow celtuce yourself as its seeds have been for sale in the United States for more than 50 years.

How did celtuce appear in the United States?

It is an amazing story actually. Celtuce seeds arrived in the United States thanks to David Burpee and Burpee seed company.

David was the son of famous W. Atlee Burpee, who launched the business. David and his father were seed collectors. In his best days, before World War I, W. Atlee traveled 30,000 miles every year looking for seeds that would produce excellent vegetables and flowers. David had connections with people all over the world, including China. The Burpees corresponded with several missionaries and it had been a missionary, called Carter Holton who found a weird veggie, called later celtuce.

The Burpee company presented the seeds for sale in the United States in 1938 and it was Burpee who created the name celtuce.

Celtuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettuceCeltuce: Nutrition Facts, Benefits, And How To Cook Chinese LettucePat Condron / Shutterstock.com

How to cook celtuce

If you are lucky enough to find celtuce with fresh young leaves, you can use them in your favorite salad or cook slightly. Stems can be eaten raw or cooked. Don't forget to peel the outer skin and then slice the stalk. You can use stems in salad, soup or pickles. You may also stir fry with whatever you want.

We believe that celtuce’s most delicious part is its stem, and one of the most creative ways to cook it is to strip the stem down into noodle-like shapes with a peeler. Try to create thin, translucent strips to make your dish look impressive.

If you’re eating celtuce raw, use it instead of cucumbers, celery, or radishes. If you’re cooking it, mix the slices into stir-fry and stew.

Celtuce can be scary-looking, but its texture and flavor are amazing! Give this vegetable a try and you will not regret it. Go to buy celtuce or grow it yourself. It turns out that celtuce is easy to grow and it can tolerate both hot and cold temperatures.

According to some home cooks, it's better than broccoli in every way. Do you agree? Have you ever eaten celtuce?

Food