B.F. Burch’s Lettuce Wraps, by Beverly Hicks Burch

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B. F. Burch’s Lettuce Wraps

Tall & Handsome and I like to eat at a certain Chinese bistro. On one of our excursion there I happened upon a certain appetizer that in my opinion is the perfect meal, and that would be the lettuce wraps. There are two varieties on the menu and our favorite is the vegetarian lettuce wraps served with mint and lime wedges.

We fell in love with this dish so much we decided it was something we would try at home. Taking my Chinese cooking lessons and a lot of research which included reading a whole lot of lettuce wrap recipes, I finally developed a recipe that we feel is as good as or better than the aforementioned Chinese bistro. As a matter of fact, we have served them for guest and have been told they are better.

The recipe is easy to make. Like most Chinese recipes, the work comes before the cooking and is in the prep time. I have all my chopping done before I start the cooking and I have my sauce made before hand also.

Now, you may be asking who the heck is B.F. Burch? Well, folks that would be me and that “F” stands for my middle name 😉

I really do hope you give these a try because they are refreshing and truly amazing no matter what season of the year.

B.F Burch’s Lettuce Wraps

1 tablespoon oil – you can use a vegetable oil like canola or a peanut oil which would add an extra Asian touch

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 teaspoons – 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped

1 pound ground chicken (ground turkey will work if you can’t find the chicken)

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon ground pepper

¼ cup finely chopped fresh mushrooms

3 cloves minced garlic

¼ cup finely chopped bamboo shoots

¼ cup chopped walnuts

1- 8 oz. can water chestnuts, finely chopped

¾ cup Hoisin/chicken broth sauce (see below)

2 – 3 dashes hot Chinese chili paste/sauce

Lime wedges

1. In a wok or large skillet heat oil on high until hot. Add onions and ginger and cook until the onions are translucent.

2. Next add the chicken and cook until the chicken is lightly brown. When browned, season with the salt and pepper.

3. Add the mushrooms and cook them until they are tender.

4. Add garlic, bamboo shoots, walnuts and water chestnuts and stir fry about 1 – 2 minutes.

5. Add ¾ cup Hoisin/chicken broth sauce and 2 – 3 dashes Chinese hot chili paste. Cook until mixture boils.

6. Serve with cold, crisp lettuce leaves. Spoon desired amount of mixture onto the center on a lettuce leaf. Spoon some Hoisin/chicken broth sauce over the filling and squeeze some fresh lime juice onto the mixture. Roll up the lettuce leaf and enjoy!

Sauce:

4 tablespoons Hoisin sauce

4 tablespoons soy sauce (I use low sodium)

4 tablespoons dry sherry

4 tablespoons oyster sauce

4 teaspoons sesame seed oil

4 teaspoon cornstarch, divided

1 cup chicken broth, you can use low – fat, low – sodium, etc.

1. Combine all ingredients and mix well. ¾ cup will be used in cooking the chicken filling and the remainder will be used for dipping sauce or to spoon over the filling of the lettuce wraps.

2. I reserve the ¾ cup for the chicken mixture and add 1 teaspoon of cornstarch and mix well before add to the chicken mixture. Then I add 3 teaspoons to the rest of the sauce and heat in the microwave, stirring about every 30 seconds so sauce will thicken slightly and not separate.

Enjoy!!

lettuce warps

© 2012 Beverly Hicks Burch All Rights Reserved.