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In the Kitchen: Create your own Asian dinner night
Adlen Robinson

I absolutely love lettuce wraps of all types. Whether they are made with beef, chicken or turkey, or are Thai flavored or a mix of various Asian flavors, I love all of them. This recipe calls for ground chicken, but you can easily substitute ground beef or turkey. I like to use rice stick noodles, but you can also use sticky rice instead. Play around with various toppings—you can use chopped cashews instead of peanuts, or various other toppings. My favorite lettuce to use is Bibb, but in a pinch, Iceberg lettuce works—and you can always make these into a bowl, instead of wraps.

Serve these lettuce wraps with hot and sour soup and some edamame. I promise you are going to be hailed an incredible chef!


Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps 

1 pound ground chicken

1 tablespoon avocado oil

½ an onion, finely minced

1 cup red bell pepper, finely minced

1 can water chestnuts, rinsed, drained and finely minced

 

Sauce:

3 tablespoons soy sauce

3 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter

1 tablespoon honey

2 teaspoons sweet chili sauce

½ teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger

 

Toppings:

Bibb lettuce leaves, cleaned and separated

Rice stick noodles, cooked according to package directions, drained and rinsed well with cold water, and then cut up with kitchen shears

Cilantro leaves

Green onions, sliced

Carrots, cut into matchsticks

Toasted sesame seeds

Roasted peanuts, chopped

Sriracha

 

Heat oil over medium-high heat. Brown chicken until chicken is beginning to brown and is cooked through. Add onion and red bell pepper and cook until vegetables are softened. Add water chestnuts.

Meanwhile, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients. Add sauce to skillet and stir to combine. To serve, let everybody add some cooked chicken mixture and toppings of your choice.

I also love hot and sour soup and this is a good one! In restaurants, hot and sour soup is often scarily high in sodium—making it at home, means you can control that.

 

Hot and Sour Soup

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth, preferably low sodium

5 ounces shitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced

½ can bamboo shoots, rinsed and drained and thinly sliced

3 tablespoons rice vinegar (more to taste)

2 ½ tablespoons soy sauce (more to taste)

1 ½ teaspoons freshly grated ginger

1 ½ teaspoons chili garlic sauce (more to taste)

2 Tablespoons cornstarch

1 egg, whisked

4 ounces firm tofu, cut into small cubes

2 green onions, sliced

½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Reserve ¼ cup of the broth and whisk in the cornstarch. In a saucepan, combine chicken (or vegetable) broth, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, rice vinegar, soy sauce, ginger and chili garlic sauce. Add cornstarch/broth mixture and stir to combine. Slowly whisk in the egg in a steady stream, stirring to combine. Add tofu cubes. Remove from heat and add green onions, sesame oil, salt and pepper to taste.