Lucky Lettuce Cups
Note: This recipe, created by Cecily Asplund of Utah, won a national contest and was served at a White House lunch for kids. Her lucky lettuce cups deliver a delicious stir-fry you can eat with your fingers. (If you try this recipe, get a grownup’s help because it requires using a knife and the stove.)
Prep time: 45 minutes
What you need:
- 2 tablespoons safflower oil
- ¾ pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced, plus 2 scallions sliced diagonally, for garnish
- 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup zucchini, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 cup red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch dice
- 1 cup yellow bell pepper, cut into 1-inch dice
- 1 cup lightly salted roasted peanuts
- 1 cup cooked short-grain brown rice
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1½ teaspoons rice wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon hot chile sauce (optional)
- 1 head butter lettuce, washed and separated
Equipment and supplies:
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Sauté pan
- Grater for ginger
What to do:
- In a large sauté pan over moderate heat, warm 1 tablespoon oil.
- Add the chicken and sauté, stirring occasionally, until cooked through and brown, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Transfer to a plate and set aside. Do not wash the pan.
- In the same pan, warm the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat.
- Add the 4 thinly sliced scallions, ginger, and garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute.
- Add the zucchini, red and yellow bell peppers, peanuts, and rice, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.
- Add the brown sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.
- Add the cooked chicken, along with the soy sauce, vinegar, salt, and hot chile sauce, if using.
- Mound the rice and vegetable mixture in the middle of a large serving plate and garnish with diagonally sliced scallions.
- Surround the rice with lettuce cups.
- To serve, let everyone spoon the rice and vegetable mixture into lettuce cups and eat with their fingers, taco-style.
How much does this recipe make?
- 4 servings
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: September 2013