Thai-style Pork Lettuce Cups
Active Time: 30 minutes / Cook Time: 15-20 minutes / Total Time: 30 minutes
Makes 4 servings
Nutrition Corner: Soaking Grains, Nuts, & Seeds
Soaking your grains, nuts, and seeds helps to remove some of the natural phytic acids present. Phytic acids are used as part of a plant's defense mechanism, however, when we consume them, these anti-nutrients inhibit vitamin and mineral absorption in our digestive tract. Soaking also helps to break down proteins, making grains easier to digest, and can drastically reduce cooking time.
- ½ cup quinoa
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 lb. ground pork (can substitute chicken or turkey)
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 4 thinly sliced scallions, divided
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup diced, seeded cucumber
- 1 cup diced red bell pepper
- ½ cup shredded carrot
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 small jalapeño, seeded (if desired) and minced
- ¼ cup dry-roasted almonds, chopped
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce*
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 head Boston/Bibb/Butter lettuce, separated into individual leaves (you can also use Romaine) (about 16-20)
- Place quinoa and water in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cover pan. Cook 15 minutes, turn off the heat, fluff with a fork, and let steam until needed.
- Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and cook, stirring to crumble, until pork is browned, about 5 minutes.
- Add ginger, garlic, and salt to pork and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in half of the scallions.
- In a medium bowl, combine the remaining scallions with the cucumber, pepper, carrot, cilantro, jalapeño, and peanuts.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, fish sauce, and honey.
- Add juice mixture and quinoa to pork mixture and toss.
- Fill lettuce cups with 2 slightly heaped tablespoons pork mixture and top with two tablespoons of vegetables.
- Serve ¼ of the lettuce cups per person for dinner tonight.
- Package remaining lettuce cups in airtight containers for lunch tomorrow and refrigerate until needed.
*You can substitute 2 teaspoons gluten-free tamari plus 1 teaspoon chicken broth for the fish sauce, if desired.