Lettuce wraps are a delicious departure from salads, making them the ideal dish for me to play around with. Of course leanness was a major consideration so I went in for extra lean ground chicken. You could use lean ground turkey, fish or lean beef if you like. Also, I kept the oil and the sauces light so that the calories would not pile up. Despite the caution with respect to calories, my husband and I were unable to control our portions because the meat and the wraps were so succulent and flavourful. Hope you guys enjoy the recipe just as much!
The following recipe serves two to three people.
Cooking the meat
You will need:
450 g of extra lean ground chicken
One large onion – diced
Three green chili peppers (or to taste)
Canola oil, two tablespoons of sesame oil (optional)
Four fat pods of garlic, one-inch cube of ginger – ground
Salt to taste
Lemon juice to taste
A handful of coriander leaves (cilantro) (optional)
Method of preparation:
Coat a slightly heated skillet with a little canola oil or any other neutral oil of your choice. Add a diced large onion, diced chili peppers and ginger and garlic pastes to the skillet and cook them till the onion pieces cook through. Then, add in about half a tablespoon of salt. Add in the ground meat. Stir randomly till the meat cooks through. Lower the flame.
In a separate cup, add in about a tablespoon and a half of the Hoisin, Sweet Chili Pepper and Soy sauces and mix. Add three fourth of this sauce mixture and a tablespoon of lemon juice to the meat mixture and mix. Taste and adjust for salt, lemon and the three sauce mixture as per your taste. Turn off the flame and garnish with chopped coriander leaves a.k.a. cilantro.
To add crunch to the wrap filling and to enhance the Thai flavor of the wrap, chop up some peanuts and toast them. Also grate up about three small carrots, chop up three green onions (scallions) and wash up some bean sprouts.
Assembling the lettuce wrap:
Separate the leaves of the lettuce carefully. Use the lettuce leaves like a taco. Use one or two leaves as a cup. Add in some meat filling, peanuts, carrot, scallions and bean shoots. Take a bite and give us your verdict!