Frisée Lettuce

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A unique lettuce with long, curly ("frisée" means "curly" in French) on a white stem. It is tender and slightly bitter and often used in salad mixes.

The lettuce, a member of the chicory family, is fragile and will wilt easily. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week in a ventilated bag, or loosely wrapped with a wet towel.


Other names: French Frisée, Curly Endive
Translations: Frisée salāti, Frisée Salotos, Salată Frisée, Frisée salata, Rau diếp Frisée, Sałata frisée, Sla Frisee, Frisée लेटिष, Frisee Alface, Салат Фризе, Frisée Μαρούλι, Frisée خس, Frisée 상추, Frisée Salát, Фрисее Зелена салата, Frisée litsugas, Frisée生菜, Enciam escarola, Frisée Solata, Frisée Šalát, Insalata riccia, Frisée חסה, Frisée Sallat, Frisée Selada, フリゼレタス, Frisée Laitue, Frisée Salat, Frisée Salat, Frisée Salat, Lechuga escarola, Салат Фрізе, Frisée Salaatit, Frisée маруля

Physical Description

Frisée has white and light green leaves, and occasionally red leaves, joined on a white stem. If the top leaves are yellowed, it is not a fresh head of Frisée. The leaves are very curly, thin and fragile.

Colors: White, light green

Tasting Notes

Flavors: Slightly bitter, peppery, nutty
Mouthfeel: Tender and earthy
Food complements: Salad mixes, French foods
Wine complements: Dry white wine
Beverage complements: Vermouth
Substitutes: Fennel, Arugula

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: april, may, june, july, august, september
Peak: may, june
Choosing: Fresh looking leaves with little to no yellowing, especially on the top leaves. Look for a full head that looks crispy and is without bruising, wrinkling or spots.
Buying: Frisée is most widely available in premixed salads of baby greens and herbs at most grocery stores, especially upscale ones. Gourmet and French food stores will likely carry the lettuce heads, as will some farmer's markets.
Procuring: Frisée is grown in gardens in heads, each harvested once. It is best as a spring or early summer vegetable, as the heat of summer can damage it.

Preparation and Use

Frisée is best in a salad. For example, try it with goat cheese, red onion and garlic. Or toss it with beets, apples and walnuts. It can also be rolled with prosciutto as an appetizer.

Cleaning: Separate the leaves to clean. Wash with fresh water and dry on a towel or in a salad spinner. Dry well before putting into a salad for the best consistency.

Conserving and Storing

Slightly wet the lettuce, then store loosely wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator, or store in a damp towel.


Frisée is traditionally a French lettuce and is a popular salad choice in Europe, and has only recently used in salads in American restaurants.

History: It is from the chicory family, along with Belgian endive, radicchio, and escarole, and has been popular in Europe for many years.


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Gundula's picture

Er, where is the frisee in the photo? That lettuce shown is not frisee!