Sunday, September 9, 2012

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

I've really been wanting to make chicken lettuce wraps lately but I remember making them in college and it was so much work. I found an awesome kitchen tool that is a complete life saver though! I used a pampered chef chopper that my sister in law gave to me for my wedding. It worked great to chop up the mushrooms, water chestnuts and the bamboo shoots. That's the part that's time consuming. Other than that, its a pretty simple recipe. It feels so healthy too with the lettuce. Yum! The ingredients can be pretty unique and expensive if you are not used to Asian foods but, its totally worth it. Sometimes I'm skeptical to buy expensive ingredients because I'm not sure if the recipe will turn out and then I'll be stuck with this expensive ingredient with nothing to put it in. But, this recipe is totally worth all of its ingredients! The first bite my husband took he said, "This tastes just like the Chang's." Yes, my lettuce wraps compared to P.F. Changs. I am truly honored.

I got the recipe from Spoon Fork Bacon

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon water
2 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced

cooking sauce:
2 ½ tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
2 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon sesame oil
6 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons ginger, peeled and minced
4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, cleaned, stemmed and diced
½ cup bamboo shoots, drained and diced
½ cup water chestnuts, drained and diced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 head butter lettuce or iceberg lettuce, washed and leaves separated

1 green onion, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

1. Place the first five ingredients into a small bowl and whisk together. Pour mixture over the chicken and stir together. Set aside and allow chicken to marinate for 10 minutes.
2. Place all ingredients for cooking sauce into a small bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
3. Place 2 tablespoons oil into a large skillet over high heat. Sauté chicken for 6 to 8 minutes or until half cooked. Remove from skillet and set aside.

4. Pour remaining oil into the same skillet and place over high heat. Sauté the ginger, garlic and shiitake mushrooms for about 5 minutes. Add the bamboo shoots and water chestnuts and sauté for an additional 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Add chicken back into the skillet; cook and stir for 2 minutes. Pour the cooking sauce over the mixture and stir together. Lower the heat to medium and allow the mixture to thicken, 2 to 4 minutes. Stir in the green onions. Adjust seasonings.
6. Remove from heat and allow chicken mixture to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Top with a sprinkle of green onions and sesame seed and serve warm with crisp lettuce cups.