Friday, January 18, 2013

Chicken lettuce wraps

I love my crockpot.  I really do.  I have two full size crockpots, a mini crockpot for dips, and now I have a small lunch crockpot for my desk.  I love the fix it and forget it method of cooking.  I love that I can put something in when I leave for work and when I get home, it's ready to eat. 

(Except the other night.  My work day plus commute is fairly long and a tomato sauce based recipe that cooks 
for 6-8 hours on low ended up burnt and inedible and my house uninhabitable after an 11+ hour day...)

When I discovered the website Crockpot 365 , I was really excited to find many new recipes so I could expand the use of my crockpot.   Even better that all of the recipes are gluten free! 

The hardest part of eating gluten free is no more Chinese food, so I was very excited that she put up a few make your own takeout recipes.  And even better yet, they were all for the crockpot.  It's practically exactly like takeout, but waaaaaaay cheaper and healthier. 

I know many people (especially me) look at their favorite over or stove top recipes and try to figure out some way to make it a crockpot recipe.  But for ones, I was looking at a crockpot recipe and wondering if I could make it a stove top recipe.  I was desperately craving lettuce wraps, and wanted them NOW (along with a golden goose) and I didn't want to drive the hour to the closes PF Changs and didn't want to wait the 4+ hours it would take for them to cook in the crockpot.  So I looked at the ingredient list and cooked the old fashioned way, slaving over a hot stove. 

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

1lb of ground chicken
1/2 onion, diced
6 cloves of garlic
1-2 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 can of water chestnuts, drained and chopped
1/4 cup gluten free soy sauce or coconut aminos
1/4 cup white wine
2 tbl balsamic vinegar
Fresh ground black pepper
1 bunch of green onions, sliced thin
1 head of butter lettuce

Brown chicken in a large deep skillet.   While cooking, break chicken into small pieces.  I love to use my PC hamburger chopper for these kinds of jobs.  When the chicken is almost done, and sufficiently broken up into small bits, add the diced onion and cook for about 3-5 minutes until the onion is soft.  Add the garlic, ginger, and water chestnuts and cook for about a minute.  Add soy sauce, wine, and vinegar.  Cook for about 5 minutes until the sauce is reduced by about half.  Season with pepper to taste.   Spoon a bit of the chicken mixture into a lettuce leaf.  Sprinkle with green onions.  Serve while chicken is warm.  Makes a great appetizer or light dinner!

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