breaking news

Election 2017: Sinclair asks voters to renew $28-million levy

Quick to make, fun to eat: Chinese lettuce wraps


Here's a meal that works for a household full of folks on different schedules. Stir-fry the ginger-and-garlic-flavored mushrooms and ground pork whenever you've got a quorum for dinner. It has a minimal amount of heat from small red chiles and a bit of piquancy from the combination of Chinese rice cooking wine and soy sauce. (Portions for young or timid eaters can be done without the chiles, of course.) The mixture goes into crisp leaves of small-head lettuce and gets a last-minute helping of crunchy scallions; spoon in what the appetite demands.

Similar dishes at Chinese-style restaurants often goop up the mixture or make it too sweet; this one's got a nice savory balance.

The rest can be reheated in minutes, either on the stove top or in the microwave, for subsequent dinners or lunch the next day.

- - -

Pork and Mushroom San Choy Bau

4 servings

Pork is the ground meat of choice here, because we like its fat content for flavor (typically 20 to 25 percent). We tested this with ground dark-meat turkey and the mixture was a bit drier.

This is the kind of dish that comes together quickly, so that's why we're doing all the prep upfront.

Serve with steamed rice.

Adapted from "Harvest: 180 Recipes Through the Seasons," by Emilie Guelpa (Hardie Grant, 2017).

Ingredients

1 1/2-inch piece ginger root

2 cloves garlic

1 or 2 small red "finger" chiles or bird's-eye chiles

3 1/2 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms

3 1/2 ounces fresh oyster mushrooms

4 scallions

2 tablespoons safflower oil

1 pound lean ground pork (see headnote)

2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine

Low-sodium soy sauce or dark soy sauce

2 heads gem lettuce, "artisan" small-head lettuce or 1 small head iceberg lettuce

Steps

Peel the ginger, then mince it. Crush the garlic cloves. Stem and seed the chiles (to taste), then mince them.

Stem the shiitakes; coarsely chop all the mushrooms or cut them into very thin slices. Cut the white and light-green parts of the scallions on the diagonal into thin slices.

Heat half the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, stir in the ginger, garlic and chiles. Stir-fry for 20 to 30 seconds. Add the remaining oil and the mushrooms. Stir-fry for about 3 minutes, or until they have released their moisture, then discard the garlic. Add the ground pork; stir-fry for 3 to 5 minutes, breaking up any large clumps, until it loses its raw look.

Add the Chinese rice wine and season with the soy sauce (to taste); reduce the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. The meat should be cooked through.

Meanwhile, separate the lettuce leaves, rinse, pat dry and place on a platter.

Transfer the pork mixture to a serving bowl. Sprinkle the scallions on top and serve right away, with the lettuce leaves.

Nutrition | Per serving (using 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce): 250 calories, 27 g protein, 12 g carbohydrates, 12 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 65 mg cholesterol, 290 mg sodium, 3 g dietary fiber, 5 g sugar


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Food & Dining

Now Martha Stewart hangs with Snoop Dogg and makes weed jokes
Now Martha Stewart hangs with Snoop Dogg and makes weed jokes

Here are some of the things Martha Stewart has done on her new show with Snoop Dogg: She has worn a blinged-out cheese grater on a chain around her neck. She has drunk out of what can only be described as a pimp cup. She has taste-tested a stoner recipe for a pizza omelet. She has name-dropped Escoffier. She has not flinched when Rick Ross said to...
Intrepidly, the Florida Keys are returning to life
Intrepidly, the Florida Keys are returning to life

A month after Hurricane Irma whipped its ferocious winds across the Florida Keys, a pearl-like strand of subtropical islands with an ecosystem unique in North America, much of the once pristine landscape remains littered with the wreckage the storm left behind.  Tourism, normally a $1.6 billion-a-year industry that employs about half the Keys&rsquo...
What's a good coffee grinder for a tiny space?
What's a good coffee grinder for a tiny space?

The Washington Post Food staff recently answered questions about all things edible. The following are edited excerpts. Recipes whose names are capitalized can be found in the Recipe Finder at washingtonpost.com/recipes. A: I recently bought the Hario Mini Mill hand grinder. It's slim, easy to use, and it produces uniform coffee grounds, which is what...
FOOD DEAL: How to get a $3 burrito from Chipotle on Halloween
FOOD DEAL: How to get a $3 burrito from Chipotle on Halloween

Chipotle is known for dishing out food deals to its fans.  The latest “Boorito” offer is a $3 burrito, bowl, salad or order of tacos from 3 p.m. to close on Halloween. You can stop by any Chipotle to get your food, but here’s the catch: you’ve got to be in costume. Here’s further fine print about the definition of ...
Let’s Eat: Sticky wings with honey and Sriracha
Let’s Eat: Sticky wings with honey and Sriracha

We’re over a month into the regular NFL football season. By now you should be perfecting your skills for that great pre-game eating experience known as tailgating. Instead of the typical hot Buffalo flavor, why not shake up your tailgate Sunday with sticky, spicy Asian-style hot wings? These are baked, then sauced and served with a cool cucumber-lime...
More Stories