From Darlene Schmidt, Your Guide to Thai Food. This Thai recipe for lettuce wraps is quick and easy to make. It's also a fun dish to eat, either as an appetizer or as part of a main course. Serve the filling on a platter with whole iceburg lettuce leaves on the side, and let your friends and family wrap their own. They'll love the combination of crisp, cold lettuce with the warm, flavorful filling. And it's a low-calorie, low-fat treat that's also very nutritious. Lettuce wraps make a great party food!
- fresh iceberg lettuce (about one head, this type works best for this recipe)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 piece galangal, grated (or ginger)
- 1 red chile, de-seeded and finely sliced (omit altogether if you prefer very mild wraps)
- 2 shallots, sliced finely
- 1⁄2 cup firm tofu, cut into matchsticks (OR 1/2 cup cooked chicken or pork, shredded, OR 1/2 cup cooked baby shrimp)
- 1 carrot, cut into thin strips
- 4 -5 shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 1 egg (optional)
- 1⁄2 cup shredded cabbage (red is very good, but any type will work)
- 3 spring onions, sliced lengthwise into matchstick-like pieces
- 2 cups brean mixed sprouts
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons regular soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce (if vegetarian, use vegetarian fish sauce)
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce (if vegetarian, use vegetarian oyster sauce)
- 1 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped if leaves are large
- 1⁄2 cup dry roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons oil, for stir-frying
- Place oil in a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic, galangal (or ginger), chilli, and shallots. Stir-fry one minute, or until fragrant. Stir-frying tip: add a tablespoons water whenever the wok/pan gets too dry instead of more oil.
- Add tofu (or meat/shrimp), carrot, shiitake mushrooms, cabbage, and spring onions.
- As you stir-fry, add the lime juice, soy sauce, fish sauce, and oyster sauce. Stir-fry about 1 minute.
- Push ingredients to the side of the wok or pan, and crack in the egg. Stir-fry the egg quickly, breaking the yolk. Mix in with the other ingredients.
- Add the bean sprouts and stir-fry briefly (to mix). Remove from heat and do a taste test for salt, adding 1 Tbsp more fish sauce if not salty enough.
- Cut off the stem part of the iceburg lettuce so it's easier to separate the leaves. Now place the lettuce, the sir-fried filling, and the toppings on your table, allowing family or guests to make their own wraps.
- To assemble wraps, take a whole lettuce leaf and place 1-2 heaping tablespoons of filling in the center. Top with a sprinkling of fresh basil and peanuts. Then wrap it up and eat. (For those who like it extra spicy, Thai chilli sauce can be added as another topping.).