“Mind-blowing! Gimme the recipe?” That’s the chorus every time I serve these. Lime, sesame, ginger, chile, cilantro, and a kick-ass combo of veggies is killer. The finely chopped veggies give a ground-meat look and feel. So your cups don’t fall apart, use butter lettuce or romaine. But, don’t stress—your guests will be happy to lick the drench off their hands. To add crunch, top with pine nuts and gomasio; for more heat add the red pepper flakes. Any way you serve these stars, they’ll be a sensation.
shiitake & asparagus lettuce cups with lime drench
MAKES 16 LETTUCE CUPS; SERVES 8 AS AN APPETIZER, 4 AS A MEAL; LIME DRENCH MAKES 2/3 CUP (160ML), FILLING MAKES 4 CUPS (800G)
¼ cup (60ml) fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
1 tablespoon mirin
1 tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos, gluten-free soy sauce, or tamari
1 teaspoon minced garlic (about 1 clove)
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1½ teaspoons coconut sugar or other sweetener
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
1 small green chile, ribbed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 cup (72g) finely chopped green onion (white and green parts)
6 cups (312g) finely diced shiitake or cremini mushrooms
1 cup (110g) finely diced zucchini (1⁄2 medium zucchini)
1 cup (140g) finely diced asparagus (about 5 medium spears)
¼ cup (60ml) toasted sesame oil
3 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos, gluten-free soy sauce, or tamari
1⁄2 cup (14g) loosely packed finely chopped cilantro
16 large butter, Bibb, or romaine lettuce leaves (outer leaves of about 4 heads)
Pinch of red pepper flakes
½ cup (70g) raw or dry-toasted pine nuts
2 tablespoons gomasio (ground sesame seeds and sea salt) or sesame seeds
To make the lime drench, throw all of the ingredients, including the red pepper flake booster, into your blender and blast on high for about 30 seconds until well combined. Transfer to a container and set aside.
To make the filling, in a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and sauté the garlic, green chile, ginger, green onion, mushrooms, zucchini, and asparagus for 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture has reduced to about half the volume; gradually add the sesame oil and liquid aminos as the mixture cools. Don’t overcook or the vegetables will get mushy. Stir in the cilantro and the pine nut booster.
To assemble, scoop ¼ cup (50g) of the filling into each lettuce leaf, drizzle with 1 teaspoon of the lime drench, and sprinkle with the gomasio booster. Serve immediately, passing the remaining lime drench at the table. These are fabulous cold, too. Chill the filling and the dressing before assembling.
nutritional facts (per serving, based on 16 servings)
calories 65 kcal | fat 5.3 g | saturated fat 0.7 g | sodium 224.4 mg | carbs 3.9 g | fiber 1.1 g | sugars 1.5 g | protein 1.4 g | calcium 16.1 mg | iron 0.6 mg
For this recipe and more, purchase your own copy of The Perfect Blend on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2h5WdOh
Reprinted with permission from The Perfect Blend, copyright 2016 Tess Masters.
Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Photography copyright 2016 by Anson Smart
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