Our lettuce plantings are growing fast. How can you pick it and keep it fresh and not wilted? I learned this from my Dad and it works very well:
1. Pick and wash your lettuce.
2. Put the lettuce in a mesh bag (I use an onion bag) and swing it (outside!) to get rid of excess moisture. Do it several times to get the lettuce as dry as possible.
3. Take the lettuce out of the mesh bag and pat it dry with a paper towel.
4. Line a storage bowl with paper towels. Put your lettuce in the bowl, cover it with a paper towel, and snap the lid on the bowl.
Doing this will keep your leaf lettuce fresh for at least a week, perhaps longer. It's a good idea to do this with store-bought lettuce too, since the cleanliness of bagged and pre-packed lettuce is an issue these days.