So, hi, it will be August by the end of this week. Where the heck has this summer run off to? Are we seriously in the second half of 2013? Am I seriously getting married in two-and-a-half months? What is going on here, people?
While I calm down from my panic attack here, let’s talk summer suppers.
Mm, the crunchy, sweet and sour chicken lettuce wrap. I think these are the perfect evening meal for summer- light, cool, and crisp, with minimal cook time and maximum flavor. If you have ever been to a PF Changs, this is one of their famous appetizers- and I think this copycat recipe does a great job imitating their classic flavor.
What an easy and fun recipe this is – and I guarantee it will please even the carb-lovers and vegetable-haters in your family. My nutritionally-challenged fiance actually requested I make these lettuce wraps for him, lettuce and all!
You will notice I suggest grinding the chicken in the food processor before cooking. You can absolutely feel free to buy pre-ground chicken from the store- I just get paranoid about what is actually in the ground meat, so lately I’ve taken to buying fresh organic chicken and grinding it myself. Whatever floats your boat, though!
- ¼ cup sugar
- ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenders, breasts, or thighs (your choice), or, 1 lb ground chicken
- 3 tbsp oil
- 1 can water chestnuts, diced
- 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon rice wine vinegar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- Iceberg lettuce leaves
- Hot mustard
- Make the “special sauce”: Mix together sugar, water, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, ketchup, lemon juice and sesame oil in a bowl until combined. Store in the fridge while you make the chicken filling.
- Prepare stir-fry sauce: Combine soy sauce, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil in a measuring cup or small bowl. Set aside.
- If you are using ground chicken, skip this step. Otherwise, in a food processor, add your chicken of choice and pulse 10 times to grind up the chicken, or until all unmanageably large pieces are gone. You want somewhere between chopped and total mush- so just take a look at the consistency after each pulse and stop at your liking.
- In a pan, heat up oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until brown, about 5-6 minutes. Remove chicken from the pan using a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate.
- Reduce heat to medium. To the pan, add the onions and celery and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the veggies begin to soften. Add the garlic, mushrooms, water chestnuts and chicken and stir to combine. Add the stir fry sauce and stir, and allow to cook for 2 minutes more.
- Serve in iceberg lettuce leaves, and top with “special sauce” and other toppings as desired. Enjoy!
Adapted from Food.com.
What else is new with you all? This Friday, I have off so I am going with my mom to test out getting my hair done for the wedding! I really can’t wait. I will have to start pinning up a storm of hairstyle ideas that I like. I’m also working on setting up my appointment for something I’ve been looking forward to since we got engaged- Wedding cake tasting!!! YAY!