As you’re cleaning your lettuce for salads, notice how some of those leaves make a perfect little cup, or boat, ideal for laying in delicious ingredients and wrapping up to eat as a finger food. Set those aside for this recipe. You can’t have too many–if you don’t eat them all, they will be happy to join their friends in the salad bowl.
– Perfect lettuce leaves – bibb, butter and romaine varieties are good choices (quantity depends on size of leaves and how many you want per person)
– Boneless chicken thighs, sliced into strips, marinated in Ozark Shiitake Soy sauce overnight, or at least sprinkled with it while cooking
– 2-4 Garlic cloves, minced
– 8-10 asparagus spears, sliced in bite-sized pieces
– one or two scallions or garlic scapes, sliced in bite-sized pieces
– one share (half pound) oyster or shiitake mushrooms, sliced or torn in strips
– pea, sunflower or mixed shoots
– oil for cooking
– crushed peanuts for topping
As the season moves along and different produce becomes available, consider cauliflower, broccoli, peas, etc.
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/3 cup Vietnamese fish sauce
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 small bird’s eye chili, minced
1 inch carrot
*Faster, lazier Dipping Sauce Ingredients: Kitchen Kulture Thai Peanut Sauce
Directions for Dipping Sauce*
In a small bowl, whisk sugar into hot water until sugar dissolves. Add lime juice, fish sauce, garlic, and chili, and stir to combine. Just before serving, grate the carrot into the sauce and stir.
*Directions for faster, lazier dipping sauce: Heat on low in a small sauce pan or heat in a microwave-proof dish.
Directions for Lettuce Wrap
Prepare each of the filling ingredients separately. Serve either in small dishes or a platter large enough to hold all the ingredients. You may plate the lettuce leaves for serving and allow everyone to create their own wraps.
1. Heat two tablespoons of oil in a large cast iron skillet and saute chicken until golden and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Add one or two cloves of minced garlic a few minutes before the end of cooking. Transfer to serving platter or bowl. *If using Kithcen Kulture Thai Peanut Sauce, toss a about half with the chicken and serve the remainder at the table.
2. While chicken is cooking, saute mushroom strips in olive oil until golden and getting crispy. Again, add 1-2 cloves minced garlic a few minutes before the end of cooking.
3. Saute the asparagus and scallion together for a few minutes until browning–don’t overcook it, a little texture is nice here.
Put the wraps together tableside, placing a small layer of each ingredient in the lettuce. You can spoon the sauce on or dip in, depending on the state of your wrap. Sprinkle the peanuts on last. My wrap ingredients would have all gone into the bowl of sauce if I had attempted to dip it, so the spoon was necessary. Gobble it down. Repeat while supplies last.