To add even more crunch to this easy weeknight recipe, top the chicken with grated carrots, chopped water chestnuts or sliced radishes. Serve alongside sesame noodles or steamed, frozen dumplings, or, for a fun party appetizer, serve the chicken mixture in endive boats.
Chicken in Lettuce Cups
- 3 Tbs. hoisin sauce
- 1 Tbs. rice vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. hot pepper sauce such as Sriracha (optional)
- 2 Tbs. peanut or canola oil
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 lb. (750 g) ground chicken
- 3 Tbs. Asian fish sauce
- 2 Tbs. low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- 1/3 cup (1/2 oz./15 g) loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- 3 Tbs. pine nuts, toasted
- 1 head romaine or iceberg lettuce
1. To make the sauce, in a small bowl, whisk together the hoisin, vinegar and hot sauce. Set aside.
2. In a large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and sauté just until the garlic is soft, about 1 minute. Add the chicken and cook, stirring occasionally and using your spoon to break up any clumps, until the meat is cooked through, 5 to 8 minutes.
3. Stir in the fish sauce, soy sauce and lemon juice. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro and pine nuts.
4. To assemble, core and separate the lettuce head into individual leaves, using only the sturdy, cup-shaped leaves; reserve the flimsy or flat leaves for another use. Arrange 1 or 2 of the lettuce “cups” on each of 4 plates, or arrange smaller lettuce leaves on a platter for appetizers. Spoon the chicken mixture into each leaf. Drizzle with the sauce and serve immediately. Serves 4.
For more fresh ideas about how to prepare chicken, whether for a
quick family meal or an impressive weekend spread, check out our
Chicken Night: Dinner Solutions for Every Day of the Week.