One of our favorite Asian dishes is Tofu Lettuce Wraps at PF Changs and Mama Fu’s. I learned how to make a copycat recipe of PF Changs years ago, because, alas, no PF Changs in Lubbock. Now we treat ourselves often to the newly opened Mama Fu’s – half price appetizers from 3-6 pm every day! It’s a small chain, but if you’re ever traveling and see one, I highly recommend it. The cucumber salad is one I make often. It’s my little one’s favorite bedtime snack. Fast, easy, and very tasty. Plus, no sugar, so she can eat it after she’s brushed her teeth, which used to happen a lot.
OK, so, Thai flavors in a lettuce wrap. Since sesame and lime were ingredients, I decided to make the sauce with tahini, and I modeled it after the Middle Eastern Tahini-Lemon sauce that most people know as the yummy tangy-ness on their gyros or falafel. Tahini, lime, tamari, with a touch of honey. This mixed easily and I tossed the heated wrap mixture with the sauce after cooking. It could also have been used as a condiment. I kept the essential lettuce wrap ingredients pretty much the same – shiitake mushrooms, water chestnuts, and tofu, and then added peanuts and the required snow peas, then traded garlic and scallion for a shallot.
I love all of these ingredients, so I knew I’d love this. My husband and I missed adding a spiciness to it, as we do at the restaurant with chile sauce and hot mustard, but I wanted to taste it as is, and I knew that spice would keep the girls from liking it. But, next time I would figure out how to add some Thai spiciness. My older girl liked it, but only went back for seconds on the cucumbers. The little one liked it better. Herein lies the issue – when you change the flavoring that they already like, it’s hard to make something they like better. The little one isn’t as big a fan of the restaurant lettuce wraps, so she was more apt to like this one. All in all though, I’d say it went over well. What drew them both in, was that I finally figured out how to make those little bean threads that they love so much!
I enjoyed it quite a bit. It had the right amount of crunch and tang, and was perfect for a light meal, which we needed because we waited until after dance classes to eat last night, which means right before bed.
Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps with Asian Cucumber Salad
Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps
- 2 T lime olive oil
- 1 tsp minced ginger, plus one slice to infuse oil.
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1- 8 oz can water chestnuts, small cubes
- 1 oz dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in boiling water for 30 min, minced into small cubes
- ½ pound baked sesame peanut tofu, sliced into small cubes
- 1 cup chopped snow peas, sliced into 1/4 pieces
- ¼ c chopped roasted unsalted peanuts
- ¼ c tahini
- 2 T lime juice
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 T tamari sauce
Deep fry Bean Threads and break into pieces
Iceburg Lettuce, separated to make cups
Add the oil to the wok with the slice of ginger. Cook until ginger is browning, then remove. Add shallot, cook for 2 min. Add ginger, cook 1 min. Add in remaining ingredients, peanuts and snow peas last. Toss to heat. Remove, toss with tahini sauce. Serve in a lettuce cup with bean threads.
Asian Cucumber Salad
- 2 cucumbers sliced and quartered
- ¼ c tamari
- ¼ c toasted sesame oil
- 1 T sesame seeds
- 1 T black sesame seeds