Quick skillet meals and salads are dinner staples during the summer-when the sweltering temperatures mean no one is interested in a hot, heavy meal or heating the kitchen for hours. This delicious take-out inspired meal combines the best of both. As written this is a perfect light summer meal for two or appetizer for four. I need to double this when I make it for dinner for my family-two adults and two kids. For four hungry adults, or as a party appetizer, I would triple it.
Chicken Lettuce Wraps
serves 2, prep 10 min, cook time 10 min, adapted from Recipezaar
- 2-3 tbsp oil, sesame or peanut are nice
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 4 oz mushrooms
- 1/2 cup water chestnuts (optional)
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp brown sugar, I use dark
- iceberg lettuce leaves
- Heat the oil in a skillet or wok over high heat.
- Break up and brown the ground chicken. Remove cooked chicken from the pan, reserving the oil. Do not rinse the pan.
- Mince all of the vegetables-mushrooms through garlic. You also might want to run your knife through your cooked chicken as well to get the pieces more uniformly sized, you want everything to be texturally at the same fine mince.
- In a small bowl whisk together the soy sauce, sugar, and vinegar. You could also add some red pepper flakes or sriracha sauce if you want a little spice.
- Reheat your oiled pan to high heat, adding some additional oil if necessary.
- Add your chicken and vegetables to the hot oil and saute until onions and garlic soften.
- Add the sauce and cook and toss for an additional couple minutes. Taste and adjust your salt and seasonings.
- I serve this family style, in a large bowl, with plenty of iceberg leaf “cups,” fried rice and steamed sugar snap peas.
Don’t let the brown sugar in the sauce bother you, it does not make the dish overly sweet. Mr. Chaos does not particularly care for sweet entrees so I am generally on the look out for sugar as an ingredient. However, I have found in many stir fry sauces sugar and honey simply add depth of flavor that balances out the salty and vinegary. We love anything you eat with chopsticks so I’ve had to run this risk with numerous recipes and we’ve always agreed it balances well without being overly sweet.
Does anybody have any suggestions as to how to easily separate a head of lettuce? There’s got to be a way since restaurants do it all the time. My lettuce cups were particularly pitiful this go round.