Thursday, August 8, 2013

Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

We have spent the last week in Chicago visiting with my daughter Amber and her hubby Tadd. They have 4 amazing children that we had the privilege of doting on. 8 year old Harrison was getting baptized--what a great event. The week was filled with boat rides, bike riding, playing, swimming parties, shooting bb guns etc. Luckily Amber and I had to look out for baby. So we spent hours visiting with each other and just catching up on life. And of course playing with baby!
Amber and I both love to bake and cook. Chopping is therapy! The first meal we made together were these delicious Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps. I'm sure I exposed bad manners--I couldn't eat these fast enough! Bad me. So the first meal when I got home was Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps. Hungry Max happened to drop in at dinner time and agreed--these are amazing. I served them with chilled water melon and corn on the cob. We were having fresh peach short cake for dessert but we were to full!
This low fat dish can easily be made gluten free. You can also cut the carbs and just delete the rice. So many choices. Such a yummy dish! Thanks Amber.

Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Short Grain Rice, I cook mine in a rice cooker--perfect results every time. I always cook extra rice, then I am that much closer to dinner another night. Think Curry, Fried Rice, Beans and Rice etc. If you don't have a rice cooker just follow the directions on the package. Easy

12 leaves of Boston, Bibb or Butter Lettuce, washed--next time I will give them a gentle whirl in my salad spinner--I do love that thing!

2 tablespoons Fish Sauce--don't substitute, it is stinky (don't smell it) but it adds an incredible layer of flavor.
1 tablespoon Soy Sauce
3 tablespoons of fresh lime juice (before juicing the limes--zest them, you will need 2 teaspoons of zest later). Don't try zesting after you have juiced the limes--one word, difficult! I do know these things. I'm all about saving you from the mistakes I have made!
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Put sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside

Meat Mixture
1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeds removed and diced
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 pound ground chicken--I did not like the looks of the ground chicken at the market I went to so I did a little Google research and It paid off. I semi thawed 1 pound of chicken tenders--cleaning/cutting out all the parts I don't want to eat. The tenders are now in about 1 inch chunks--still semi frozen. I put the entire pound in my food processor with the metal blade and pulsed it several times. Scraped down the sides and pulsed a few more times. You don't want a mush just a chop--watch closely. Now you have ground chicken--and you know exactly what is in it!
2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves--perfect because my basil plant is going crazy right
3 green onions finely chopped

Now let's make this dish happen!
Put 2 teaspoons of oil in a large non stick skillet on medium heat--heat till shimmering. Add the meat mixture with the zest and jalapeno. Cook for about 5 minutes breaking up the chicken with a wooden spoon. Cook till pink is gone.
Whisk together the sauce ingredients and add to the meat mixture. Stir constantly for about 2 minutes until slightly thickened.
Remove from the heat and add basil and green onions

To Serve:
Place a small spoonful of rice on a lettuce leaf. Add chicken mix, be sure you get a few drops of juice. Fold lettuce leaf up like a taco and enjoy every flavorful-bite. I dare you to not make this twice in one week! That is just how good it is.
Printable Recipe

Thanks Mel from Our Kitchen Cafe--another winner!


Mary Bergfeld said...

What a great family! The little one looks a bit dubious, but had you another week with her she'd have been all smiles. The wraps sound wonderful. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Nedra said...

Cute family picture,Cindy :) enjoy those grandbabies!

Candise said...

Mmmm... I think I'll make these as soon as I can get to the store for the right lettuce. Looks delicious!

Deb A said...

Awwwww what a great picture - such a special time! I love the look of the little one in the front - she reminds me of my daughter when she was that age... Deb Oh, the food looks good too :-)

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to try this! Every recipe you post is lovely!

Debra Eliotseats said...

Beautiful family pic! I have a lettuce wrap recipe in the archives somewhere but I think yours sounds easier to make (and delicious). :)

Liz That Skinny Chick Can Bake said...

Aw, what a wonderful photo! I bet you had a marvelous week with those sweet grandchildren. And I love Asian lettuce wraps and haven't made them in eons...this is a recipe I must try :)

Amber @ said...

I love your commentary about the fish sauce. Normally that would turn me off from a recipe like this, but I might try it out anyway :) Thanks for sharing at Sweet & Savory Saturdays #25!

~Amber @ Dessert Now, Dinner Later!

Kayte said...

Love the photo of you all...such a great photo, even Harrison with his frownie face looks adorable. Baby looks like Eliza! Fun how that happens, isn't it? Looks like a great recipe, I'm all about chicken wraps with lettuce, thanks for giving me a new one to try. I like them for school lunches, and it's that time of year again, school starts tomorrow so I'll put on my teaching shoes and off I go. How did summer speed by so quickly?

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Cindy, what a wonderful picture - your grand-children look so cute! You must have had a fabulous time visiting with them and I am sure that the baptism was a wonderful event too! Now these Asian Chicken Wraps sound like such a wonderful family meal - one of my daughters is crazy about Asian wraps and she would adore these - and so would I - wonderful recipe and great pictures - what an enjoyable post this is!
Thank you also for all your kind comments - I really appreciate each and every one of them!
Have a wonderful week, Cindy!

cooking with curls said...

Looks delicious! Thank you so much for joining us and sharing at Best of the Weekend! Pinning to our party board. Have a great week and please join us next Friday.

Unknown said...

Yumm! This looks amazing! I love the jalepeno and lime addition to the meat mixture, I would have figured that for a latin flare but I really like the idea of using it with the asian sauce. I'll be trying this one out! Krista @ A Handful of Everything