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  #1  
Old 06-09-2012, 06:52 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Iceberg Lettuce Sucks

Man I hate this lettuce. Why is it so popular? It tastes like nothing, has little to no nutritional value outside of maybe roughage and besides a yummy wedge salad (which is only yummy because of bleu cheese crumbles and diced tomatoes and bacon) has very little practical utility IMO.

I mean, maybe a leaf of it on a burger is all right, but I can think of better things to dress a burger with.

With so many yummy leaf lettuces, mustard greens, spring mixes, arugula, frissee, etc available...why eat this shit?

Who's with me?

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  #2  
Old 06-09-2012, 06:54 PM
Musicat Musicat is offline
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How do you feel about Romaine?
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  #3  
Old 06-09-2012, 06:54 PM
twickster twickster is offline
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I might be, if I'd eaten any in the last 20 years or so. Thirty years? Longer?
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  #4  
Old 06-09-2012, 06:55 PM
cwthree cwthree is offline
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Me. There is no excuse for the persistence of iceberg lettuce in this day and age. Even a wedge salad can be improved by putting the toppings on a bed greens that have actual flavor.

Seriously, iceberg lettuce is why I grew up hating salad and why I didn't realize I could love salad until some time in my mid-'20s.
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  #5  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:03 PM
wolfman wolfman is online now
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Iceberg lettuce is such a nothing it isn't even worth hating.(except the spines, I hate iceberg spines passing as salad)
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  #6  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:04 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwthree View Post

Seriously, iceberg lettuce is why I grew up hating salad and why I didn't realize I could love salad until some time in my mid-'20s.
Amen, Brother!

The same for me with salad dressing served by Mama Plant and discovering mayonnaise with the help of the New and Improved Mrs. Plant in 1982.
(There was a long waiting time.)
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  #7  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:07 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musicat View Post
How do you feel about Romaine?
Romaine is fine...not the greatest lettuce but a clear step above iceberg. It least it has a slight bitter tinge of flavor. Iceberg tastes like nothing but crunchy water (band name?). There's a restaurant here that does wood-fired, grilled hearts of romaine Caeser salads and its fucking amazing.

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Originally Posted by twickster View Post
I might be, if I'd eaten any in the last 20 years or so. Thirty years? Longer?
I am guilty of partaking of the same thing I am bitching about at higher-end steak houses...in the form of a wedge salad. The iceberg lettuce basically serves as a crunchy, edible plate/delivery system for bleu cheese, tomatoes and bacon, so its tolerable...

Quote:
Originally Posted by cwthree View Post
Me. There is no excuse for the persistence of iceberg lettuce in this day and age. Even a wedge salad can be improved by putting the toppings on a bed greens that have actual flavor.

Seriously, iceberg lettuce is why I grew up hating salad and why I didn't realize I could love salad until some time in my mid-'20s.
...but I also agree with this. I have never seen a wedge served with any other lettuce (and I realize that the presentation of it "requires" a huge chunk of head lettuce to "look right"...but plenty of foodie places deconstruct traditional presentations, so...) but I'd be excited to try a different take on the "classic".

OK, enough scare quotes for now.
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  #8  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:13 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
Iceberg lettuce is such a nothing it isn't even worth hating.(except the spines, I hate iceberg spines passing as salad)
I hate it because of its ubiquitousness and persistence. And I hate those damn stems too. They are even worse that the pale green leaves.

At best, iceberg can serve a useful purpose as a filler mixed with other quality greens to enlarge a salad in say, a restaurant house salad mix, for instance. But that's about it.

Where are the iceberg defenders? The gauntlet has been thrown!
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  #9  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:20 PM
Maggie the Ocelot Maggie the Ocelot is offline
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Husband is an iceberg enthusiast, I'm afraid. Only iceberg is "real lettuce" to him, he will tolerate other greens that are actually...green, but if given the option always prefers good old' iceberg.


I've tried, with results similar to the Titanic's.
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  #10  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:21 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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People like iceberg lettuce for its texture not its taste. Its "crunch" gives it a good mouthfeel.

You might argue, so what? But in a salad the dressing is going to provide ninety percent of the taste anyway. The lettuce often just serves as a foundation to carry the dressing. So the texture of the lettuce can be more important than its flavor.
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  #11  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:21 PM
Ellen Cherry Ellen Cherry is offline
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I wholehearteadly agree with the OP, but I have two people in my household who demand that I purchase this disgusting stuff. They say they like the crunch.No, they will not accept celery. They want the iceberg, and yes they will tolerate my addition of an approved amount of either spinach (100% of my salad) or maybe, MAYBE some romaine or green leaf if I get uppity.

Crunch. They want Teh Crunch.
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  #12  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:24 PM
Max the Immortal Max the Immortal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Where are the iceberg defenders? The gauntlet has been thrown!
Iceberg lettuce has a pleasing texture that is appropriate for many recipes. It has a very subtle flavor, but if you think it has no flavor whatsoever, your palate is deficient.
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  #13  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:25 PM
zoid zoid is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Where are the iceberg defenders? The gauntlet has been thrown!
Iceberg is the Wonder white bread or boneless/skinless chicken breast of the vegetable world.

Its purpose is simply to support the other elements. It is the stage the actors perform on. It is the chip that carries the dip. It fulfills this role exceptionally well.
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  #14  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:38 PM
Chipacabra Chipacabra is offline
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I've grown to like the taste of iceberg. It might have to do with realizing that if you can't taste the iceberg, you've got WAY too much dressing. And the crunch is quite nice. I still want some dark greens mixed in there for flavor, though.
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  #15  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:41 PM
Skara_Brae Skara_Brae is offline
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It's funny. I recently ordered a salad at a beer-and-BBQ type place recently, and the waitress told me, very tentatively, "Just so you know, that salad doesn't have iceberg lettuce, it's mixed greens." She seemed surprised when I said that was fine.

Now I can just picture someone flying into a rage because their salad didn't have iceberg lettuce. "What is this dark green crap?! I can't eat this..."
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  #16  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:46 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
People like iceberg lettuce for its texture not its taste. Its "crunch" gives it a good mouthfeel.

You might argue, so what? But in a salad the dressing is going to provide ninety percent of the taste anyway. The lettuce often just serves as a foundation to carry the dressing. So the texture of the lettuce can be more important than its flavor.
I disagree. There are some very delicately flavored salad dressings out there (admittedly, mostly homemade or at nice restaurants, not thick Ranch crap that most people buy at grocery stores, but that's another thread) that do not obscure the flavor of the other components in a salad. Problem is, if iceberg is a component, it HAS no flavor!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellen Cherry View Post
I wholehearteadly agree with the OP, but I have two people in my household who demand that I purchase this disgusting stuff. They say they like the crunch.No, they will not accept celery. They want the iceberg, and yes they will tolerate my addition of an approved amount of either spinach (100% of my salad) or maybe, MAYBE some romaine or green leaf if I get uppity.

Crunch. They want Teh Crunch.
Put Captain Crunch in their salads and tell them to shut the fuck up.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Max the Immortal View Post
Iceberg lettuce has a pleasing texture that is appropriate for many recipes. It has a very subtle flavor, but if you think it has no flavor whatsoever, your palate is deficient.
I have to agree that the texture is okay...there's not too many other lettuces I can think of that have that same *snap* texture when bitten, but that textural strength is its flavor weakness in that it is only present due to being bloated with so much flavorless water.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zoid View Post
Iceberg is the Wonder white bread or boneless/skinless chicken breast of the vegetable world.

Its purpose is simply to support the other elements. It is the stage the actors perform on. It is the chip that carries the dip. It fulfills this role exceptionally well.
Eh...maybe. Shred a little into some tuna salad and I won't complain. The shit sucks, though, particularly in salads, which I am loving making/eating more and more as I age. Iceberg adds nothing of value to those other than the aforementioned filler.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipacabra View Post
I've grown to like the taste of iceberg. It might have to do with realizing that if you can't taste the iceberg, you've got WAY too much dressing. And the crunch is quite nice. I still want some dark greens mixed in there for flavor, though.
Maybe my palate is deficient, but iceberg tastes like crunchy, watery nothingness to me.
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  #17  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:47 PM
Chimera Chimera is online now
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"What the hell is this? I ordered a salad, not a bunch of weeds!"

What is terrible is going to some non-chain restaurant out on the great plains and their idea of a "salad" is this big solid wedge of iceberg lettuce. <shudder>
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  #18  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:55 PM
silenus silenus is online now
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Iceberg has its place in a salad, much more so than the lawn clippings that most "reaching for class" places fill their salads with these days. I don't want to see dandelion, cress, endive or escarole anywhere near my salad. Iceberg, romaine, maybe a little Bibb. That's it.

You can have my iceberg when you pry it from my cold, dead hands that clutch my fork.

This is completely leaving out shredded for tacos, taco salads, hamburgers, etc.
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  #19  
Old 06-09-2012, 07:57 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chimera View Post
"What the hell is this? I ordered a salad, not a bunch of weeds!"

What is terrible is going to some non-chain restaurant out on the great plains and their idea of a "salad" is this big solid wedge of iceberg lettuce. <shudder>
"Out on the great plains"? Are you mocking flyover country, sir/ma'am?

The gloves are off now! Just because people around here think haute cuisine involves casseroles that might include: marshmallows, Jello with vegetables, anything with locally hunted deer meat or something akin to scrapple/goetta does NOT mean we cannot appreciate proper salad greens sir!

I respectfully request that you retract your derogatory and inflammatory statement and apologize unreservedly!

These people are the salt of the Earth!

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  #20  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:01 PM
VunderBob VunderBob is offline
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Originally Posted by zoid View Post
Its purpose is simply to support the other elements. It is the stage the actors perform on. It is the chip that carries the dip. It fulfills this role exceptionally well.
Exactly why I like it. That, and it makes a dandy mild laxative, too.
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  #21  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:01 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Originally Posted by silenus View Post
Iceberg has its place in a salad, much more so than the lawn clippings that most "reaching for class" places fill their salads with these days. I don't want to see dandelion, cress, endive or escarole anywhere near my salad. Iceberg, romaine, maybe a little Bibb. That's it.

You can have my iceberg when you pry it from my cold, dead hands that clutch my fork.

This is completely leaving out shredded for tacos, taco salads, hamburgers, etc.
NO, no, no!

WTF is wrong with you? As a long time member of this board, the assumption is that you are a liberal douchebag, and LIBERAL DOUCHEBAGS ARE SUPPOSED TO TRY TRENDY THINGS AND PRETEND TO LIKE THEM!



Anyway, you don't like watercress, escarole or endive? You can keep the dandelion greens (although I like them)...but seriously? Bitter greens associated with other properly arranged flavors are a remarkable contrast to the ranch dressing sponge that is iceberg lettuce.

And as far as tacos go, I'd rather forego iceberg in them altogether in favor of salsa, shredded cheese, more seasoned beef, sour cream, guacamole or just about ANYTHING other than iceberg lettuce. Taco Bell is the worst of the worst in the taco world because of their insistence on loading up their hard shell tacos with their cheapest ingredient: shredded water strips. Yuck!
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  #22  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:17 PM
Regallag_The_Axe Regallag_The_Axe is offline
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Iceberg Lettuce Sucks

Here, here! Iceberg lettuce is one of those white foods that got popular at some point and just kept going because of inertia. Give me romaine any day of the week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Put Captain Crunch in their salads and tell them to shut the fuck up.
I need to do this some time, because it would be funny as hell!

ETA: someone mentioned guacamole, and I need to say that the store bought stuff doesn't count as real guacamole. It tastes like salty mush. There's no avocado flavor at all.

Last edited by Regallag_The_Axe; 06-09-2012 at 08:19 PM..
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  #23  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:17 PM
TBG TBG is offline
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meh, it's just a delivery system for salad dressing anyway. Sure, I'd rather have some mixed greens or something if available, but if not, gotta put the ranch or thousand island on something.

edit: In other words, what Zoid said, lol

Last edited by TBG; 06-09-2012 at 08:18 PM..
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  #24  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:18 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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I am fond of mesclun and spinach. Romaine is good as leaf boats with fine diced celery, cuke, tomato and carrot shreds with a light vinaigrette, and maybe some nicoise olives. You could make little taco salads, or fruit salads, whatever you like.
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  #25  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:21 PM
silenus silenus is online now
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The ideal restaurant salad just may be the wedge salad at SW Steakhouse (Wynn Las Vegas). Big wedge of baby iceberg, hit with a decadent blue cheese dressing, blue cheese crumbles (Roquefort), heirloom grape tomatoes and a hunk of bacon that had to be 3" x 2" x 1", right from the grill. Heavenly.
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  #26  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:28 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus View Post
The ideal restaurant salad just may be the wedge salad at SW Steakhouse (Wynn Las Vegas). Big wedge of baby iceberg, hit with a decadent blue cheese dressing, blue cheese crumbles (Roquefort), heirloom grape tomatoes and a hunk of bacon that had to be 3" x 2" x 1", right from the grill. Heavenly.
I am completely on board with this version. Sadly, again, the iceberg is just an edible plate to serve the yummy fixings on. Yeah, yeah, the texture. I think I would rather heap all those things you mention onto a proper bed of spring or mesclun greens and just eat it as a salad rather than the overly dramatic "wedge".
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  #27  
Old 06-09-2012, 08:45 PM
Equipoise Equipoise is offline
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Some places are charging extra for iceberg lettuce. We went to McDonalds last night and my husband ordered double cheeseburgers with mayo and lettuce, which isn't the norm. They charged 30 cents extra for mayo, and 30 cents extra for lettuce. For each sandwich. We wondered why the total was so high and that's when they told us. I'll bet most people don't even realize that you have to pay extra to have it your way at McDonalds. We walked out and went to a real burger place down the street. Ok, so I'm married to a man who orders iceberg lettuce on his burger (he's really great otherwise!), but for them to charge extra for it, not to mention mayo, was just insane.
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  #28  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:05 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Originally Posted by Equipoise View Post
Some places are charging extra for iceberg lettuce. We went to McDonalds last night and my husband ordered double cheeseburgers with mayo and lettuce, which isn't the norm. They charged 30 cents extra for mayo, and 30 cents extra for lettuce. For each sandwich. We wondered why the total was so high and that's when they told us. I'll bet most people don't even realize that you have to pay extra to have it your way at McDonalds. We walked out and went to a real burger place down the street. Ok, so I'm married to a man who orders iceberg lettuce on his burger (he's really great otherwise!), but for them to charge extra for it, not to mention mayo, was just insane.
Are you in Germany? The only time in my life when I was EVER charged anything extra for a McDonald's burger accoutrement was In Germany when I had to pay like three pfennigs per ketchup packet. I was appalled.
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  #29  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:13 PM
Guinastasia Guinastasia is online now
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The only time iceberg is okay is when you get the very outside leafs. They're the darkest, so at least they have some slight taste. But as you get further and further in, it's just bland nothingness. Plus it takes up some much goddamned room the fridge.

Romaine is cool, but I actually prefer spinach on my salads.
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  #30  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:46 PM
billfish678 billfish678 is online now
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The world's best sandwich is a BLT. And a perfect BLT needs the abomination that is iceberg lettuce.

Enough said. Move along folks.
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  #31  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:46 PM
not what you'd expect not what you'd expect is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post

And as far as tacos go, I'd rather forego iceberg in them altogether in favor of salsa, shredded cheese, more seasoned beef, sour cream, guacamole or just about ANYTHING other than iceberg lettuce.
What's even better is shredded cabbage, which I'm really liking a lot these days.
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  #32  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:46 PM
Jamicat Jamicat is offline
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I really don't care what leafy greens are in it...

It's all gonna be covered in an Oily Vinaigrettey' Mayo Cheesy Concoction of some sorts anyway.

If I had a choice...NO WEDGES of Lettuce...take the time, cut all that shit up.

I Prefer that my Salad to be Tossed...Each and Every Time.
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  #33  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:54 PM
oliversarmy oliversarmy is offline
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I agree with wolfman in that how can you hate something so innocuous?. It's kind of like hating water.

Regardless, as lettuce goes, it's easy to grow, relatively hardy and easy to harvest. Also, it's cheap and tasteless. We end up with a lot of vegetables like this for those reasons.
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  #34  
Old 06-09-2012, 09:59 PM
Equipoise Equipoise is offline
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Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Are you in Germany? The only time in my life when I was EVER charged anything extra for a McDonald's burger accoutrement was In Germany when I had to pay like three pfennigs per ketchup packet. I was appalled.
Nope. The McDonalds at State and Chicago Ave. in Chicago. All the McDonalds (at least, all the ones I've been to in the Chicago area) have been charging extra for mayo for months now, but since I never get lettuce on my burgers last night was the first I heard that they're charging extra for lettuce too.
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  #35  
Old 06-09-2012, 10:22 PM
Aeschines Aeschines is offline
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I agree that it's more about texture than flavor. For this reason I like it on burgers and tacos. I am not a huge salad eater, but I would prefer other types of greens over iceberg.
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  #36  
Old 06-09-2012, 10:23 PM
Biotop Biotop is offline
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You gotta wonder where the name "iceberg lettuce" came from in the first place. What is more desolate, empty, devoid of nuance, than an iceberg? The name just shouts "nothingness" to me. Empty name, empty lettuce.
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  #37  
Old 06-09-2012, 10:39 PM
urban1a urban1a is offline
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I have always liked iceberg lettuce better than any other salad greenery stuff. I like the crunch and the fact that you can pick up pieces using the tines of the fork. Any time I go out to eat and an offered a salad with 'field greens (the weeds from the lot next door)' or a bunch of leaves which were picked off the trees in the forest behind the restaurant, I just push it aside.

As an aside, salad ingredients must be crisp and cold. Wilted, warmish, green things just don't attract me at all.

Bob
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  #38  
Old 06-09-2012, 10:54 PM
billfish678 billfish678 is online now
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Originally Posted by urban1a View Post
As an aside, salad ingredients must be crisp and cold. Wilted, warmish, green things just don't attract me at all.

Bob
If you think about it, if the salad is cold, that IS what iceberg lettuce delivers more than any other salad green. Lots of cold water. Heck, I suspect thats where the iceberg name comes from. It supplies the cold and the crunch while the other ingredients supply the flavor.

Iceberg + other stuff is going to be different than just plain other stuff or other stuff + whatever hippy lettuce. Now you may not LIKE the first one, but to say the Iceberg does nothing is just plain wrong.
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  #39  
Old 06-09-2012, 11:10 PM
Ulfreida Ulfreida is offline
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Although I think I have bought three or four heads of the stuff in my entire lifetime of eating salad, when I was growing up it was the only lettuce on offer. I still rather like it, but I don't think of it as lettuce. More like crunchy water. Nothing wrong with crunchy water.

Most 1950's style American food I can't force down and couldn't even when I was a kid. I would actually vomit if I had to try to eat a sweet pickle relish baloney sandwich on wonder bread. I was very thin as a child. But I could eat that iceberg lettuce, and because of this I retain a fondness.
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  #40  
Old 06-09-2012, 11:12 PM
Patty O'Furniture Patty O'Furniture is offline
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By bologna sandwich needs a nice cold layer of crunch. No other lettuce does that as well as iceberg.
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  #41  
Old 06-09-2012, 11:59 PM
Jaledin Jaledin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Where are the iceberg defenders? The gauntlet has been thrown!
It's more about the texture -- it's kind of a blank canvas. I wouldn't want to eat a head of it like an apple, really, but it's got a lot of water in it (good for hydration of self), probably some nutrients, and sets off whatever it's served with via its crisp texture and general air of wholesomeness.

And it does have a taste -- maybe not that strong a taste, but it's not like eating nothing-tasting things.

White rice doesn't have too much flavor either, but it's the foundation of many of the best cuisines on the planet.
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  #42  
Old 06-10-2012, 12:21 AM
rock party rock party is offline
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Iceberg became the definitive lettuce in the '50's because it ships well and has a long shelf life.
What it doesn't have is flavor or nutrition.

Thankfully we now have lots of leafy greens to choose from. YEA progress!
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  #43  
Old 06-10-2012, 12:57 AM
CanvasShoes CanvasShoes is offline
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I agree. I don't hate it, but it's boring and tasteless. My favorite salad is one of spring greens.
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  #44  
Old 06-10-2012, 01:16 AM
Dag Otto Dag Otto is offline
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Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Taco Bell is the worst of the worst in the taco world because of their insistence on loading up their hard shell tacos with their cheapest ingredient: shredded water strips. Yuck!
Well, that and every other ingredient they use.
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  #45  
Old 06-10-2012, 01:50 AM
boytyperanma boytyperanma is offline
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It has a good crunch and it is ridiculously cheap. If I'm not sure if I'm going to make a salad or not and I'll pick up a head so I have it for sandwiches. If I end up throwing most of it away I still feel I got my money's worth.

Other lettuces I make sure they are consumed.
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  #46  
Old 06-10-2012, 02:12 AM
Lightray Lightray is offline
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I like iceberg for its crunch, and moisture, and taste. I even snack on it plain, as long as it's not the nasty, limp outer leaves. Same reason I like celery (which has a stronger taste, but also strings that get caught in my teeth).

For salads that're going to be drowned in some dressing, I'll just use romaine.

I avoid salads with those other vile and limp greens. If someone is describing it as "peppery", I'll know they're serving me food that rabbits would turn noses up at. Watercress is peppery; that other stuff is just limp leaves.
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  #47  
Old 06-10-2012, 08:45 AM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oliversarmy View Post
It's kind of like hating water.
But water sucks! It really, really sucks!
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Old 06-10-2012, 09:55 AM
delphica delphica is offline
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I like it, but then again, a big part of that might be that I seldom have it - it would be unusual to see it as a salad around here (it's always spinach or "field greens") except as a wedge salad, and as already mentioned, a wedge salad gets an A+. And I really like the cool crunch on burgers or chicken sandwiches.

So iceberg lettuce -- good at what it's good for, and what else can you ask of a food?
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:04 AM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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I have always felt that iceberg lettuce is a pathetic waste of water and cropland. The use of good soil to produce this drivel should be criminalized.
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  #50  
Old 06-10-2012, 10:18 AM
Patty O'Furniture Patty O'Furniture is offline
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If you do that, rutabagas have got to go too.
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