Let's talk about chopping. Sometimes when I eat out and I get a really large bite of something that should have been chopped in a different way, it is a total turnoff. I am a firm believer that the size and shape of a chop can make or break a dish.
Besides being the correct thing for your mouth and tastebuds, it also tells me that the person making my meal put thought and care into putting that dish together. Chopping is one of the most basic cooking skills, but I sometimes feel it can be overlooked as being one of the most important.
These are things I think about on daily basis …
In the case of these lettuce wraps, the chop is crucial. Long lengthwise chops for all of these ingredients insures that you are getting a perfect bite every single time. Thoughtful chopping leads to that perfect bite, and I am all about getting a perfect bite. every. single. time.
This is especially important when you are eating salad with your hands (another subject I feel strongly about). Normally I find eating salad with your hands pretty gross (having flashbacks of a co-worker who was a hand-salad eater, yikes).
…….. buuuuut, when you eat salad with your hands in the form of a lettuce wrap lined with perfectly chopped vegetables, then it is totally acceptable.
These lettuce wraps make awesome party food starters or a fun and fancy way to have lunch.
You can dress them up by adding additional ingredients like a tasty goat cheese or some good quality lump crab meat (if that's how you roll), or if you want to go 100% vegan, make the yogurt sauce with a plain coconut yogurt (I tried all of those versions and they all worked great).
Feel free to add in all the spring veggies you have in your fridge, but promise me you will chop and assemble the ingredients with "the perfect bite" mantra in your head.
avocado + snap pea + radish lettuce wraps with a jalapeño mint yogurt
several lettuce wraps
1 avocado, sliced
4-5 radishes, sliced thin lengthwise
a large handful of snap peas, sliced thin lengthwise
some pea shoot, micro greens, sesame seeds and/or gomascio for garnish
about 14 large pieces of bib lettuce
for the jalapeño mint yogurt:
1/2 cup of greek or coconut yogurt
1/2 of a jalapeño, de-seeded and minced
several mint leaves, sliced thin
1 small garlic clove, minced
1-2 tablespoon of lemon or lime juice
a generous pinch of salt
some fresh cracked black pepper
Make the yogurt:
- Place all of the ingredients for the yogurt in a small bowl and stir to combine. Cover and set in the fridge while you prep everything else. This can also be done ahead of time, even a couple of days. The longer the flavors have to marinade, the better.
Prep + assemble the lettuce wraps:
- Lay half of the lettuce leaves on a plate or a flat surface, then double up the leaves, so you have 2 leaves per lettuce wrap. I like to do this so the wrap is more sturdy. Then, add in the ingredients to the lettuce, start with a dollop of the jalapeño mint yogurt, then add the avocado, snap peas, radishes, and top with the sesame seeds, pea shoots, and micro greens, if using. Enjoy immediately.