Romaine hearts aren't just for salads! The sturdy heads stand up well to gentle cooking techniques like braising. Here we've cooked them in chicken stock until they're just crisp-tender, then drizzled them with a creamy sauce made from the braising liquid. This dish makes a nice accompaniment to grilled chicken or steak. Alternately, try drizzling your favorite vinaigrette over the lettuce for a "hot salad" presentation.
shallots (thinly sliced)
clove garlic (thinly sliced)
Earthbound Farm Organic Romaine Hearts
1 ½ cup
good quality chicken stock (hot)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Melt the butter in a large skillet with a lid over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low and add the garlic. Cook slowly until the shallots are soft and the garlic fragrant, about 2 minutes more.
Trim off a thin slice of the dry stem end of the romaine and discard (including any discolored portions). Cut the romaine hearts in half lengthwise through the stem end. Place the halves, cut side up, in the skillet and add the hot stock. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and braise the hearts for 5 minutes. The hearts should be crisp-tender; continue cooking another several minutes if necessary, but remember that the lettuce will continue to soften as it sits.
Remove the romaine hearts with tongs or a slotted spatula to a platter. Add any collected juices to the skillet and raise the heat to high. Boil until the juices have reduced by half. Stir in the crème fraîche and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the lettuce halves on a platter and drizzle with the hot sauce. Serve immediately.