Lettuce wraps with ground chicken

You’ll need ground chicken or turkey, pine nuts, fresh ginger, scallions, your favorite Hoisin sauce, Worcestershire sauce, rice vinegar, a bit of oil, and a dozen or so fresh tender lettuce leaves (butter-head is very nice). I like to put something crunchy in here, too: sometimes I use a can of water chestnuts, but you could also use celery if you prefer. Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, 2006.

  • 2 Tbsp peanut oil (something with a high smoke-point is preferable)
  • 2-3 Tbsp peeled fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 scallions, sliced thinly (about 1/4 c) (divided in half)
  • 1 lb ground chicken or ground turkey
  • 1 8-oz can water chestnuts, rinsed and coarsely chopped [optional]
  • 1/4 bottled Hoisin sauce (I like Lee Kum Kee brand)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 c pine nuts, toasted
  • 12 large red or green lettuce leaves

This recipe goes together very fast: have everything measured, chopped, and ready to go.

Heat a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat; toast the pine nuts, with no oil in the pan, moving them around, until they are lightly toasted and fragrant. Set aside.

Bring the skillet up to temperature again over moderately high heat, then add oil. Add ginger and half the scallions, and stir-fry until ginger is fragrant, which will take just less than a minute. Add the ground chicken, spreading it out in the pan, and stir-fry until just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Now add the water chestnuts, hoisin and Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, and toasted pine nuts. Stir-fry until they are heated through, about 1 minute.

Transfer to a serving bowl, and sprinkle with the rest of the sliced scallions.

Serve by spooning the hoisin chicken mixture into lettuce leaves.