Mariel here. This is probably one of the most summer-friendly dinners out there. While it requires a good deal of chopping – not my favorite pastime – it’s totally worth the somewhat annoying prep. And cooking takes about 7 minutes which is always a good thing when you live in a tiny apartment that gets sweaty-hot in about one hot minute. I use lean ground turkey in this recipe and this time around I added summer squash, since it was sitting in my fridge and needed a job. If you want to make this vegetarian, you can swap out the turkey for tofu and the oyster sauce for vegetarian oyster sauce – there’s such a thing, I’m told…
Thai Lettuce Wraps
Makes 8-10 servings
1 lb of lean ground turkey – $5.99
1 large head of iceberg or romaine lettuce – $1.99
1/2 cup summer squash (or yellow zucchini as I call it), diced – $0.60
2 carrots, peeled and grated – $0.79
5-7 mushrooms (button, shitake, whatever you like), thinly sliced – $1.99
1 cup shredded/grated red cabbage – $0.79
6 green onions, chopped – $0.69
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped – $1.49
1/2 cup chopped peanuts (optional) – $3.59
5 tsp of minced garlic – stock
2 heaping TBS ginger, grated – $0.60
2 tsp Chinese chili-garlic sauce (found this near the soy sauce) – $2.79
1 large shallot, sliced finely – $0.60
2 limes, juiced – $0.80
4 egg whites (save yolks) – stock
4 TBS soy sauce – stock
4 TBS fish sauce – Asian stock
2 TBS oyster sauce – $4.99
2 TBS canola oil (or vegetable oil) – stock
Grand total assuming “stocked” kitchen: $27.70
Cost per serving: $2.77
1. Get the chopping out of the way. Chop, grate or dice all the ingredients listed above that need it.
2. Measure out all of the liquid ingredients ahead of time (i.e. soy sauce, fish sauce, limes, even egg yolks). I normally sort of do this as I go, but since the cooking times are quick, it’s nice to have everything sitting there ready to be tossed in.
3. Pour the oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat. Add the garlic, ginger, chili-garlic sauce and shallots. Stir fry 2 minutes (stirring continuously so it doesn’t burn).
4. Add the ground turkey (taking care to break into small chunks), carrot, mushrooms, cabbage, squash, and spring onions. Then add the lime juice, soy sauce, fish sauce and oyster sauce. Stir-fry for about 2 minutes mixing well.
5. Add the egg whites to the mixture – I like to move the ingredients to the side of the skillet and quickly stir fry the egg in the pan before mixing it all together for 2 minutes.
6. Remove from heat and set aside. Let stand for 2-3 minutes. Place in a large serving bowl.
7. Garnish the turkey/vegetable filling with cilantro and chopped peanuts and serve with a slotted spoon (to strain juices) alongside the lettuce.