Thursday, March 8, 2012

P.F. Chang's Lettuce Wraps

I love P.F. Chang's. If you've never been, put it on your bucket list! Their mongolian beef is amazing. And don't even get me started on their cashew chicken! But their lettuce wraps are what really get me going. They are technically an appetizer on the menu, and if you know me, you'd know I'm a "no appetizer just water is fine with me" kind of restaurant customer. But at P.F. Chang's I break all the rules! It brings out my wild side.

And P.F. Chang's is where my hubby took me the night he proposed, so it has sentimental value too.

But anyway, back to the good food! Looking at this recipe the first time I was thinking "Dang that's a lot of ingredients!" But really, most of the stuff you should already have in your pantry. All I had to go buy was hot chinese mustard and water chestnuts! And it looks time consuming, but it really isn't. Just some stirring of ingredients and cooking of chicken. And really, it's all worth it. Because they taste just like P.F. Changs, just cheaper and a little healthier too!

I made an Asian theme that night, and served it with Fried Rice - there were no empty stomachs that night!

P.F. Chang's Lettuce Wraps (made by you!)
by Girls in Aprons, slightly adapted from

3 T vegetable oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
1 8 oz. can sliced water chestnuts, drained and minced
1/2 cup minced white mushrooms (or use any mushroom you prefer)
1/2 yellow onion, minced
3 green onions, chopped to about 1/2 inch long
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 to 2 T sesame oil

4 T soy sauce
4 T brown sugar (not packed tightly)
1 tsp rice vinegar

Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, and rice vinegar in a small bowl. Set aside.

Heat vegetable oil over medium-high heat until shimmering, about a minute. Add chicken and stir fry for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until the chicken is mostly cooked through. Add the water chestnuts, mushrooms, onion, green onion, garlic, and stir fry sauce, stirring until the onion and mushrooms are cooked through and tender, about 3 to 4 minutes. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, adding more to your preference. Keep warm.

4 T sugar
1/2 cup hot water
3 T soy sauce
2 T rice vinegar
2 T ketchup
1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice (please PLEASE do NOT use the bottled stuff!)
1/4 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp hot water
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T Chinese hot mustard (or for those who don't want the heat you can use dijon mustard - but seriously, my kids could handle the hot mustard!)

1 head butter lettuce, bibb lettuce, or iceberg (they use iceberg at P.F. Changs, but I really like how the butter lettuce held up to the lettuce wraps)

In a medium sized bowl dissolve sugar in the 1/2 cup hot water. Stir in soy sauce, rice vinegar, ketchup, lemon juice, and sesame oil. In a small bowl, combine the 1 tsp hot water, garlic, and mustard. Add 1/2 tsp or so at a time to the soy sauce mixture, until you've reached your desired taste and spicy level. This is how they do it at P.F Changs. You can also completely omit the mustard sauce if you want.

To prepare: Take a whole leaf of lettuce and place about 2 spoonfuls or so of the chicken mixture on the lettuce. Spoon pouring sauce over the chicken. Carefully roll up and enjoy!

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