Wednesday, March 6, 2013

PF Chang's Chicken Lettuce Wraps

My version of PF Chang's Chicken Lettuce Wraps

I had never been to a PF Chang's restaurant until this past summer on our trip out to Colorado.  I have no idea if a PF Chang even exists in Iowa...Someone should get on that.

Anyway, my mother in law ordered the chicken lettuce wraps and let me have a taste.  She's real sweet like that. :)  I loved it.  I don't even remember what I ordered.  Seriously, I couldn't tell you.  But I do remember those lettuce wraps.  So I googled copycat recipes and I found this one HERE.  As with any recipe, I'm never content to just do as I'm told, so I have tweaked this one into my own version, but many of the ingredients are still the same.

Go ahead and start your rice first... I absolutely love Basamati rice.  It is the only rice I ever use.  So. yummy.

Start off with about a pound of chopped chicken.  You can do this a couple of different ways.  I prefer to just buy ground chicken.  No fuss, no messy chopping... it's great.  I have also done it with partially thawed chicken breasts.  I say "partially thawed" because this makes for the easiest way to chop the chicken into pretty little cubes.

Cook the minced chicken over medium heat in a large skillet.  Mince half of a small onion.  The recipe calls for much more, but I have found it to be too much for my family.
chopped chicken breasts and half of a small onion, minced.
A plethora of ingredients including finely
chopped water chestnuts 
 The most difficult part of this recipe is just the uniqueness of the ingredients.  I mean... what the heck is Hoisin sauce?  I've never had that in my pantry, but now, it's a staple.  It's like China in a bottle.  Tasty.

Add to the skillet:
2 TBS minced garlic (I buy the squeezable kind)
1 TBS soy sauce
1/4 c. hoisin sauce
2 tsp. minced ginger (again, squeezable rocks)
1 TBS Rice wine vinegar
(you can also use red wine vinegar)

When the rice is just about finished and needing to be drained... add the last two ingredients to the chicken:

1 can water chestnuts finely chopped 
2 tsp. sesame seed oil

 Now, many recipes will call for Bib lettuce, and if we had a grocery store that actually carried it, I might use it.  But I have found that Romaine lettuce leaves do nicely.  Cut off the core and the worn tips, separate the leaves and give them a good hosing down.  The smaller leaves in the center, I find, to be the best ones.
Chicken, Basamati Rice, and Romaine Lettuce leaves.

So that's it.  Fresh and tasty. Enjoy.

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