These delicate little lettuce cups are so flavorful and delicious. The filling is exactly what I use for Chinese Dumplings.
The recipe below makes a lot so I will usually make a batch on Sunday and use half for dumplings and then save the other half to make lettuce wraps! This makes Monday night dinner really quick and easy.
You can also use this filling for baked egg rolls (I use Naysoya wrappers that I find in the produce section), or roll it into meatballs and add it to a soup, or on top of stir-fried veggies and brown rice. SO many options! This filling can be thrown together pretty quickly and is very forgiving. If you have different spices or veggies that you want to add it, go for it! Play with the flavors and make it your own. Enjoy!
2 lbs pork or chicken or 1 lb of each
1/4 white cabbage, shredded and chopped
2 scallions, finely chopped
1 tsp fresh ginger, finely grated (I used a microplane)
1 tsp garlic, chopped
2 TB cilantro, chopped
1 TB dark sesame oil
2 TB rice wine vinegar
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 TB Kosher salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 head of Boston lettuce, leaves washed and separated
1 avocado, sliced
Pickled onions for topping, optional
2 TB olive oil, for browning.
Yield: About 20 lettuce cups
Prep time: 20 – 30 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
In a large bowl, add the pork or chicken.
Cut a cabbage in half and take cut the core out.
Then cut the halved cabbage in half again.
Using a sharp knife, mandolin, or shredding attachment on a food processor, thinly slice the cabbage.
Chop up the finely shredded cabbage.
Chop the scallions.
Next, grate your ginger. This is what fresh ginger root looks like.
I really don’t spend much time peeling it. And, I don’t really think you have to. I use a microplane, or zester to grate the ginger very finely.
Finally, chop your garlic.
To the bowl with the pork, add the chopped cabbage, scallions, garlic, ginger, and cilantro.
Then add the dark sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, red pepper flakes, garlic salt, onion powder, and salt and pepper.
Mix all the ingredients together using clean hands.
Add 1 egg.
Then mix everything together again. The egg will make the mixture thick and shiny. This is where the magic happens.
Heat a saute pan to medium heat.
Add the pork filling.
Cook the pork mixture until all the juices evaporate out and the meat begins to lightly brown.
In the mean time, pull the leaves off of the head of lettuce so that you have delicate little lettuce cups.
Julienne your cucumber but cutting off a chunk and slice is downwards one way…
And then the other…
Next, slice your avocado.
I love avocado. I could seriously eat it just like this.
Okay, time to start building the lettuce cups.
Place about 4-5 lettuce cups on plate. Alright, 5.
Place one slice of avocado on each lettuce leaf.
Next to the avocado, nestle in a big scoop of pork or chicken filling.
Top with sliced cucumber and a pickled onion.