With all this farmers' market talk, I imagine someone is wondering "what the heck does she do with all those greens? Salad every night?!?" (that's what I'd wonder if I saw someone with as much lettuce as I bought the other day...) No, we don't have salad every night (some, but not every). I do have it most days for lunch, though, so that takes up some of the haul. The rest of it? Well, I like to try new things - like the basil chili lettuce wraps we had tonight.
If you've never had lettuce wraps, it's almost like fajitas, where there's a bunch of components you can put together in the middle of a tortilla to make the version you like. In the case of lettuce wraps, large Boston lettuce leaves take the place of tortillas. They're good for hot nights when you want a light meal. They're also a hit with kids (and kids at heart) - 'cause you get to eat with your hands!
For this version, I had some basil chili grilled chicken, curry rice noodles, gingered carrots and sweet chili sauce for our fillings. It was spicy, but very good. And I'm proud to say the basil was from my very own garden - my first time having success with herbs - yay!
Basil Chili Lettuce Wraps
(Serves 2-3 for dinner; 4-5 for appetizers)
3 boneless chicken thighs
1/4 c. fresh basil
3 Tbsp. sriracha chili sauce, divided
1 tsp. oyster sauce
2 Tbsp. pineapple preserves
1 large head Boston lettuce, leaves rinsed and kept whole (I got about 12 large, useable leaves - the small or broken ones can be kept for salads)
3 carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
1" ginger, grated
1 tsp. rice wine vinegar
1 package curry rice noodle soup (these are like ramen noodles, only the Thai version)
1 cup water
soy sauce, if desired
Several hours before dinner, roughly chop basil and mix with 2 Tbsp. sriracha sauce and 1 tsp. oyster sauce. Spread evenly over chicken thighs. Place in a glass dish and refrigerate at least 3-4 hours before dinner.
About 20 minutes before dinner, mix grated ginger with rice wine vinegar. Let sit 5 minutes, drain any leftover vinegar off the ginger and add the ginger to the carrots carrots.
Cook chicken on grill over medium high heat for about 15 minutes or until fully cooked, turning half-way through.
While chicken is cooking, bring 1 cup water to a boil. Add the rice noodles and seasoning from the rice noodle soup package to the boil water. Cook for 3-4 minutes until noodles are soft and most of the water is absorbed.
In a small bowl, combine pineapple preserves and remaining sriracha sauce to make a sauce for wraps.
Cut cooked chicken into strips and place on serving dish along with lettuce leaves, gingered carrots, curry noodles, and sweet chili sauce and soy sauce, if desired.
To prepare a wrap, place a lettuce leaf in the palm of your hand and top with a few pieces of chicken, some carrots and noodles, drizzle with chili and/or soy sauce, fold the lettuce inward like a fajita and enjoy!