I was thinking today as I was taking pictures with my phone of these wraps that I really should upgrade to a camera rather than rely solely on a camera phone. As I’ve mentioned before, cameras overwhelm me. I know they take better pictures, especially for a food blog, but I’ll be honest, me and my iPhone 6 work pretty well together considering. Though, while we do have our moments and I come very close to throwing it across the room, I don’t have another camera so you’d all be stuck with just a bunch of words, I’d be phoneless and well that wouldn’t lead to good things. With that being said, my phone and I were on a roll taking pictures of this little dish. I mean, just look at those colors! (gasp) When I got home after picking up some veggies at a local farm stand I knew these were definitely going into some sort of recipe just so I’d be able to photograph it…well and eat it too of course. So, with some bright green lettuce I knew right away I wanted to make lettuce wraps. What better dish to enjoy during warm summer days than lots of yummy ingredients wrapped up in a piece of crisp lettuce? These wraps have quite a kick so if you like spicy then you’ll love this. If you prefer to tone it down a bit just add less green chilies as noted below. This dish makes a great meal for 4 but works just as well as an appetizer, just add less filling and use the smaller inner leaves to wrap instead. Viola, a colorful and healthy meal, app or snack and lots of pretty pictures thanks to my trusty ol’ phone. I’ll upgrade one day…maybe…
Spicy Thai Lettuce Wraps
Serves: about 4 (2 wraps per person)/Cook time: 30 minutes
- 2 small sweet potatoes with skin, washed and diced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- pinch of sea salt
- 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 c mushrooms, diced
- 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 c honey
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 c green chilies, chopped
- 2 tsp ketchup
- 1 tsp tapioca starch
- I head of Boston or Butter lettuce
- Green onion and Sriracha as optional toppings
- Preheat oven to 375F. Toss diced sweet potato with cinnamon and oil and arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake for about 25 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
- In the meantime, heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and brown beef. When almost cooked through add in the garlic and mushrooms and continue to cook until veggies are soft.
- Combine the water, vinegar, honey, ginger, garlic powder, chilies, ketchup and tapioca startch in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Pour over beef mixture and cover. Let simmer for 10 minutes on low then remove from heat.
- Prepare wraps by gently removing the larger outer leaves from the head. Rinse and lay out to dry on a towel.
- When ready to serve, using the lettuce as the base, spoon beef mixture into leaf then top with sweet potatoes, green onion and Sriracha.
Note: If storing leftovers, keep filling in a separate sealed container from lettuce to keep leaves crisp until ready to eat. I also find it helpful to store washed and ready to eat lettuce in a freezer bag with a paper towel in the fridge. This keeps the moisture away and the lettuce stays crisper longer.
Optional plating idea: If wraps aren’t your thing, chop up the lettuce into bite sized pieces and top with filling. Dress salad as desired.
Appetizer idea: If serving as an app, fold lettuce leaves around filling, sealing both ends as well, and hold it shut with a toothpick. Serve with Sriracha for dipping.