Vegan Lettuce Wraps


There's something about lettuce wraps that makes me so happy. Is it the delicious contrast between between the crisp lettuce and moist filling? Is it the ability to east a salad and an entree all at once? Or is it that I get to play with my food by filling up wrap after wrap? I'm not sure of the answer, most likely all three of those factors, but whatever the reason, lettuce wraps are one of my favorite things to order when eating out. We rarely eat out though, so I tried my hand at creating them at home. While searching Pintrest for recipe inspiration, I came across a recipe from Jessica in the Kitchen that uses walnut meat as the protein. Yes that's right, walnut meat. As someone who has been vegetarian for almost two decades, I was surprised by a non-meat protein of which I've never heard. Walnuts, with all their omega-3 rich glory, make a wonderful meat substitute. The only caveat is that I find walnuts to be a bit pricey to turn into a meat substitute in large quantities. I included the walnut meat in my lettuce wraps, but I also added tofu to help extend the meal. Without further explanation, here's my version of lettuce wraps.


Vegan Lettuce Wraps
Serves 4

Ingredients

For the walnut meat
1 cup raw walnuts
3 cups hot water
1/2 Tbsp sriracha
1/2 tsp ginger
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic
2 tsp soy sauce (or liquid amino acids)

For the remaining filling
1 Tbsp olive olive
1 in knob of ginger, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
14 oz extra firm tofu, cubed
1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 1/2 Tbsp sriracha
1 Tbsp almond butter with maple syrup
1-2 cups walnut broth
Sesame seeds (optional)
Additional sriracha (optional)

Large lettuce leaves, washed and dried

Make the walnut meat according to Jessica's recipe, saving the the water strained from the walnuts. The resulting liquid is walnut broth.


In a skillet over medium high heat, toast the ginger and garlic in olive oil until fragrant (one to two minutes). Add in the tofu and pepper and cook for five minutes. Add in the sriracha, sesame oil, and almond butter. Slowly stir in the walnut broth until the desired consistency is reached. Remove from heat and combine with the walnut meat. Top with sesame seeds and additional sriracha if desired. Spoon onto lettuce, wrap it up, and prepare to enjoy!




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