Amen Ellen. Amen. Lettuce cups are so fancy. I always feel like I should be at Paris Hilton's baby shower or something whenever I encounter them. Yes, I'm aware she doesn't have a baby (right?)...just go with me on this one. Do you feel that way too or am I total weirdo?
They're pretty darn fabulous. I love how they'll cradle anything at all you desire to stuff them with and lettuce is well, pretty tasteless so really the sky's the limit here with regards to flavor options.
I received a massive bag of mushrooms from a Costco run and I was at a loss of what to do with them. As always, I pondered how I could combine them with legumes. I knew lentils had to somehow be incorporated into my mushroom quandary. And so, these lettuce cups were born.
Delightfully light but still hearty, with a scrumptious Asian twist from soy sauce, fresh ginger and cilantro, as well as sesame oil and rice wine vinegar these are sure to be a hit.
Asian Lentil & Mushroom Lettuce Cups
Serves a crowd
Notes: I used half split red and half whole green lentils. If using split then there's no need to strain the water and you'll need more TVP, but if using whole lentils they'll need to be strained. Start with 1/2 cup and add more TVP as needed to achieve the desired consistency.
- 2 cups lentils, dry
- 4 cups water
- 1/2 Tbsp. sesame oil
- 3 1/2 cup mushrooms, diced
- 1/2 cup TVP, dry
- fresh lettuce leaves (I like butter, but romaine would work as well)
- fresh chopped cilantro, as garnish
- sesame seeds, as garnish
- 1/4 cup liquid amino acids (or soy sauce)
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
- 1 Tbsp. agave nectar
- 1 Tbsp. sweet chili sauce
- 1 tsp. sesame seeds
- 1 tsp. sesame oil
In a large saucepan, combine the water and lentils. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. Then, reduce to low and simmer uncovered for 20-30 minutes until the water has either evaporated (split lentils) or they are tender (whole lentils). If using whole lentils, strain and return to pan.
Meanwhile, heat the sesame oil in a large rimmed frying pan over medium-low heat. Add the mushrooms and saute for at least 10 minutes, until they become fragrant, dark, and all their water has evaporated. Add the cooked lentils to the mushrooms.
For the sauce, whisk together all ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over the lentil/mushroom mixture and stir over low heat (reserve a bit to pour over the cups if you like). Add the 1/2 cup of TVP and stir well to combine. Add more as needed to achieve the desired consistency.
Serve the mixture in the washed lettuce cups and top with additional sauce, fresh cilantro, and sesame seeds.
German Word of The Day
Lettuce --> Kopfsalat (copf-saw-lot)
Good Deed of The Day
Let's put to bed the stereotype of whether or not vegans get enough protein. Finally! Watch the video here, and spread the word yo.