This is another recipe that I made while on my temporary hiatus. Like most of my recipes, this one involved some experimentation, so I’m sharing what worked and what didn’t work so well with this recipe. I had initially hoped to put the stuffing in chard, wrap it, then cook it in the oven to make little dumplings of sorts (which is why I added egg, so that they would stay in meatball form in the wrapping). I overcooked the chard and it was not appetizing. You’re welcome to give that a try, though I think the stovetop method worked out a LOT better. After cooking the stuffing, then placing it in a fresh, crunchy lettuce or cabbage wrap, you get a nice balance of textures. I’ll guide you through how I did this recipe (I apologize for the confusion in advance! Experimenting in the kitchen doesn’t always work out that well!) Or, you could totally go the other way and do an Asian-style meatloaf. Which ever way you choose, I hope you enjoy!
Asian Lettuce Wraps
- Lots of veggies (I used bell pepper, chard, celery, bok choy, zucchini, carrots, and some baby eggplant)
- Ground meat of choice (I used chicken), between .5 lbs and 1 lb. (if you’re going the meatloaf route, you may need more meat)
- 1-2 eggs (optional, more important if you’re planning to bake, not so important if you’re cooking on your stovetop; if you’re going the meatloaf route, you may need more eggs)
- Sesame seeds
- Seasonings: Ground ginger, fresh garlic, cilantro, green onion, pepper, sea salt
- Chard (stems removed, just the leaves), a leafy lettuce, or cabbage (for wrapping)
If you’re baking, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
Prep your veggies. Since these are going to be wraps, you want your veggies to be bite-sized and relatively uniform.
Ok, so from here you have two options: Option 1 (preferred): start seasoning and sauteing your veggies. Option 2 (for meatloaf or attempting the oven-baked wraps): Place veggies in a large mixing bowl with meat and eggs. Season liberally.
If you’re doing the stovetop method, add your meat to your veggies. Break up the meat and keep on the stovetop until cooked thoroughly. Recheck for seasoning.
If you’re baking, mix all your ingredients together into a squishy, gooey mess. Get your kids involved.
If you’re doing the stovetop method, once your meat is cooked thoroughly, spoon mixture into your wrap of choice, and enjoy (no pic, sorry!)!
If you’re baking, spoon your RAW mixture into your chard or cabbage leaves.
Wrap your leaves like a burrito (or as close to a burrito as possible)
Bake until meat is thoroughly cooked.
The stovetop method would be great for your lunches at work. Just keep your fresh, crisp leaves in a zip top bag or plastic container and your cooked stuffing in another container. Gently reheat your stuffing and either stuff your lettuce, or through into a salad.