Package Makes Perfect
What keeps romaine fresher longer—buying it bagged or precut in a clamshell box? Most growers say lettuce keeps better in the bag because it can breathe; the airtight box, while great at protecting leaves from getting beat up in transit, can cause them to wilt more quickly.
Hearts, typically sold in three-packs, are the most popular kind of romaine lettuce. They come from a longer variety of the lettuce, which makes up 65 percent of California’s annual crop. The heads are stripped of their outer leaves to reveal a crisp, tender interior.
Hearts of Romaine: Use these guys for grilling, dunking in dips and tossing in chopped salads.
Romaine Head: If you’re a fan of a greener salad or want a big leaf for your burger or sandwich, go for the head.