Food Feature of the Week: Mesclun Greens

HUHDS chefs are incorporating organic mesclun greens into their special dish at a Chef’s Table near you!

Mesclun greens are not a specific type of leafy lettuce. In fact, these greens are simply a salad of assorted young salad leaves. The name mesclun originated in Provence, France from the term mescla, meaning to mix.

The Provencal tradition of mesclun greens calls for a mixture of chervil, arugula, lettuce, and endive in precise proportions. However, American and other modern iterations have varied to include spinach, Swiss chard, mustard greens, frisée, mâche, and may others.

Because mesclun greens can be of many different varieties, flavors and colors change depending on the specific lettuce used. Flavors can range from bitter to peppery, and colors vary from bright green to deep purple. Notably, the mesclun mixes with the best flavor are made from young, baby leaves.

Mesclun greens are quite easy to grow in a vegetable garden. This is because the seeds in a mesclun packet are actually just a random mixture of lettuce varieties. Once the leaves are young, but of a good size, they are ready for harvesting and eating!

Check out your dining hall this week and try some different mesclun green combinations!

Photo courtesy of Flickr.com/randomduck

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