My favorite restaurant is China Bistro in Aventura, Florida. They serve a version of this as an appetizer, made with ground chicken. I attempted to duplicate it at home—and wasn’t successful until I hit upon the ingredient that gives this dish its delectable crunch—the water chestnuts! To maintain that crunch, don’t process them too small. My kids (even the babies) love eating the meat with a spoon, while the adults roll these up into elegant wraps.
- 4 servings (or 2 adult and 4 little kid servings) ServingsServings
- 1 head iceberg, Bibb or butter lettuce
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 8 ounce baby bella mushrooms
- 1 red pepper
- 1 can water chestnuts (15-ounce can)
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup soy sauce
- 3 tablespoon sesame oil
Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté until soft. Add beef and brown, cooking and stirring until brown and almost fully cooked.
In a food processor, pulse the mushrooms, pepper, and water chestnuts each 1 or 2 times. Add to sauté pan and cook 5 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Add to sauté pan. Lower heat and cook 5 minutes.
To serve, arrange leaves in a pile on a serving platter. Pile beef next to them. Allow each person to spoon a portion of meat into a lettuce leaf and roll up.
Goes With:Asian Brown Rice Stir Fry