Lettuce Roll Ups with Peanut Sauce

image
This was a pretty and healthy appetizer I made for our Super Bowl party.

I have been trying to watch the waistline but truly hate giving up flavor.

So Super Bowl Sunday, Tori and I shared the kitchen for our respective parties.


She made my Triple Cinnamon Snickerdoodle Bars and I caught her sneaking a taste of the beaters.

Busted!

Oh to be young and have a metabolism again!

Anyway, Mr. Wonderful and I rolled these up shortly before the party. I think they turned out so pretty and colorful don’t you?
Lettuce wraps roll ups 6

The inspiration for these came from a photo I saw on Pinterest. You know those pins that lead to nowhere when you click them?

Yeah, this was one of them, so I had to wing the recipe on my own.

You’ll need an entire package of egg roll wrappers.

I used these and found them at Wal-Mart in the produce cold section by the lettuce and such.

I used pre- julienned carrots, finely sliced purple cabbage, leaf lettuce and cucumbers but I think shaved almonds, thinly sliced red peppers or sticks of zucchini would also be great.

Take one egg roll wrapper and dip your fingers in a bowl of water. Moisten about one inch on opposite ends of the wrappers. This will help them stick shut when you roll them up. Take two small pieces of leaf lettuce and place them so the frilly ends are just over the ends of the wrapper like so…

This will make them pretty!

Now add your veggies in strips down the middle of the lettuce.

Then cup your fingers with both hands over the toppings and begin to roll the wrapper up pushing the toppings back against the wrapper as you roll so none spill out onto the rest of the wrapper.

I would like to point out that those are Mr. Wonderful’s hairy arms. Thank you.

Keep rolling all the way until the wrapper connects over itself. The water should help it stick shut.

After you’re done rolling all of these, cut them down the middle and place them in a high-sided dish with the ends facing up where the lettuce peeks out.

I used my favorite peanut sauce recipe for these, as I’ve never found one I like better. Serve it a bowl tucked right into the dish with the lettuce roll-ups.

There are some pretty good store-bought peanut sauces out there but none this delicious, so give it a try!

These do not keep well as leftovers so eat them ALL up immediately or cover tightly with plastic wrap to keep the wrappers from drying out.

It’s ok to eat a BUNCH of these though as they are full of crunchy healthy vegetables right?

Happy nibbling and grazing!

Lettuce Roll Ups with Peanut Sauce

Yields 10

15 minPrep Time

15 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 package egg roll wrappers
  • 1 head leaf lettuce
  • 1 c. Julienned carrots
  • 1 c. Shredded purple cabbage
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and sliced thinly
  • Options:
  • Shaved almonds
  • Thinly sliced red peppers
  • Thinly sliced raw zucchini
  • FOR THE PEANUT SAUCE
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced or grated ginger
  • ? teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 c. water to thin

Instructions

    FOR THE PEANUT SAUCE
  1. In a small saucepan, whisk all ingredients but water for the Peanut Dipping Sauce over low heat until heated through.
  2. Drizzle in water until sauce is consistency of mayonnaise and lightens in color.
  3. FOR THE ROLLUPS
  4. lay our one egg roll wrapper
  5. Dip fingers in bowl of water and moisten two opposite ends of wrapper lightly
  6. Lay two pieces of leaf lettuce across center of wrapper leaving frilly ends slightly longer than the ends of wrapper
  7. Lay lines of carrot, and other veggies down center of lettuce.
  8. Roll up wrappers keeping care to hold fillings in with both hands as you roll.
  9. Keep rolling until ends wrap around each other and stick from water.
  10. Roll remaining wraps.
  11. Cut each wrap in half and place in high sided dish or bowl.
  12. Add peanut sauce to bowl and serve immediately.
  13. T
  14. If not using immediately, cover tightly with plastic wrap. Is not good for leftovers.
  15. Peanut sauce keeps for a week in refrigerator.
7.6.4
713
http://www.dishinanddishes.com/lettuce-roll-ups-with-peanut-sauce/

Dhabha Taste of India Restaurant

Sunday Mr. Wonderful and I ventured out to try a new place.

Last week he was frightfully sick and I drove him to his doctors office, you know to make sure he would go and all?


As usual, the conversation led to food. Did you know a lot of doctors are closet foodies?

They totally are! I think they just don’t make it public knowledge because they have to make us think about eating healthy and all….

Anyway, the subject somehow turned to Indian food. He asked me where my favorite Indian restaurant was.

This is a tough question for me because I like certain dishes at different Indian restaurants. I started to tell him that I like Ajanta, primarily for their tikka masala, while I prefer Heritage India for their unbeatable garlic naan.

All the while he had a big smile on his face and was shaking his head as if to say “No, you’re wrong, SO WRONG!”

So of course I bit at the bait, like a good little fish, and asked him where he likes to go. His answer was…

Dhabha.

Huh?

The name Dhabha literally means a Punjabi (the area between Pakistan and northern India) roadside cafe found on a highway and….guess what!?

Dhabha occupies one side of an actual truck stop at the 122nd exit of I-35.

Seriously, just like a Subway or something.

Only Jared isn’t there, and it’s a little creepy.

Look for the big sign with the 5 on it between the Days Inn and the Holiday Inn Express.

Now, I realize that sign looks mighty scary. And you would be totally correct in assuming that the rest of the place is going to look a little freaky as well. This is definitely not a place for the faint of heart, but only for those seeking out really good food. From what I understand, most people get the food as takeout. But if you are brave like us, head on in and check out the shady interior as well

Just make sure and park your hubby in the creepy hallway to the bathroom to make sure you’re not a human trafficking victim and eat some amazing Butter Chicken while you’re at it.

You might think I’m kidding about that last part, but I wasn’t the only wife who did that while we were there.

Seriously.

And when you walk in the restaurant door, hey! There’s the gas station/truckstop area staring you in the face.

You’ll have to walk up,to,the counter to view the menu, and one of the two people working there will take your order. Pray that it’s the lady, because I’ve heard the man is comparable to the soup Nazi from Seinfield.

image

As in, do NOT mess with trying to be fussy about your order man, or NO TIKKA MASALA FOR YOU!

So, onto the food!

We ordered, what in most Indian restaurants would be pretty similar dishes, but were very different at Dhabha.

Mr. Wonderful ordered the Tikka Masala.

This was different from any tikka masala I’ve ever had. The sauce was very tomato/acidic and contained no creamy base like cream or yogurt. It was also laden with large chunks of green peppers and onions.

If you’re used to the rich and creamy version of tikka masala, you probably won’t like this, but if you’re trying to eat healthier, it might be a great option.

Unless you hate green peppers like I do. I think they are the only vegetable in the world I truly despise. Give me red or orange, but keep the green ones away from me. Blech!

Now if you DO like the rich and creamy version of tikka masala, you will love what I ordered. Butter Chicken (tikka makhani).

This dish differs slightly from tikka masala and it’s been my experience that butter chicken usually has bone-in dark meat and a similar sauce that has ghee or butter cooked into the sauce, making it a bit glossier in look or feel.

Again at Dhabha, this differs in that the chicken is all boneless white meat and the sauce is absolutely delicious. I would get this again….and again. Thank goodness this place is far, far away, as “butter chicken” just can’t be good on the calorie counter!

The dishes came out in dog style dishes (Mr. W. Put that thought in my head), and as usual, comes accompanied by the long grain basmati rice.

We did order some garlic naan and it wasn’t my favorite.

It was a little too “wet” and didn’t have a very strong garlic flavor at all.

On our next visit, I still need to order the biryani, because apparently, according to  the doctor man, it is unbeatable.

If you’re a food adventurist, you may want to try this place out sometime. If you do, come back and tell me what you think.

P.S. I highly recommend you call first if you do venture out there, just to make sure they’re open.

Dhabha Taste of India Restauarant
4600 NE 120th St.
Oklahoma City, OK 73131
405-478-2151

Here’s a map to help you find Dhabha!


View Larger Map

Dhaba Okc on Urbanspoon

Queso Fundido Stuffed Mushrooms

Queso Fundido Stuffed Mushrooms

I will never forget my first glorious taste of queso fundido.

I had started back to college in my late thirties and was taking a weekend ethnicity class for an elective credit.  We had to spend almost every waking moment that weekend in class, so my Hispanic professor, (bless his DEAR heart for being a foodie soul-mate) spent part of our time taking us to one of his favorite authentic Mexican restaurants so we could experience ethnicity in cuisine.


I think every class should have a field trip to an ethnic restaurant don’t you? BRILLIANCE!

When we arrived at the restaurant, he had pre-ordered some appetizers for us to try.

First up were small plates of  Tamales with mole, which provided me with my first  bite of the dark pungent sauce flavored with the depth of charred and then slow-cooked vegetables tinged with Mexican chocolate. I still am highly addicted to mole, and smile with delight when I see it on a menu anywhere.

Arriving next was what I still believe to be the 8th wonder of the world.

Queso Fundido.

A flat iron skillet was set in front of me with a melted white cheese swimming over it.  Across the cheese in three strips were spicy cooked chorizo sausage, caramelized poblano peppers, and glossy sliced and sautéed mushrooms.

My taste buds danced over the spicy but creamy mix and this particular restaurant is now closed.

Yesterday I decided to create a stuffed mushroom that gave a nod to my beloved lost dish by making these Queso Fundido Stuffed  Mushrooms.

Stuffed with Chorizo, poblanos and cheese. Mr. Wonderful ate half the pan and kept exclaiming how GOOD they are.  I hope you’ll try them.

Start out with two of the smaller size containers of Cremini Mushrooms. Wipe them clean with a paper towel, and taking a teaspoon, melon baller or  use a small cookie dough scoop to pull out the stem and make a nice little well in the center of each mushroom. This is where we’ll be putting the yummy filling.

Scoop out mushroom

Keep the stems in a bowl as we’re going to use those in the filling as well.

Chop the mushroom innards pretty finely.

chop mushroom stems

And also, chop up one poblano pepper into about the same size chunks as your chopped mushrooms.

Poblano pepper chop

Next up we need to cook our chorizo.

Photo Feb 01, 1 42 32 AM

There are two kinds of chorizo sausage, one being the fresh inexpensive kind we’re using in this dish.  It usually comes in pork or beef and is nicely spiced with things like dried chilies, paprika and garlic.

Photo Feb 01, 1 43 01 AM

If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere where you can buy locally made chorizo, it will kick this stuff out of the park, but today, I made do with what I had.

Spanish Chorizo is another delicious animal entirely and it is a cured meat you can eat cold and it is wonderful.

So, cut this open, toss it into a frying pan and cook it down until most of the liquid goes away and you’re left with cooked sausage.

Photo Feb 01, 1 46 16 AM

Photo Feb 01, 1 47 41 AM

fresh chorizo

At which point, I usually dump it into a fine mesh strainer and using hot water, rinse most of the grease off of it.

Photo Feb 01, 2 13 44 AM

Now, using a paper towel, wipe most of the grease out of the skillet but leave all those little bits in there as well and dump in your chopped poblanos and mushrooms.

poblano mushrooms

Stir fry these around a bit until they soften up – about 5 minutes.

If your pan gets dry, add a drizzle of olive oil.

poblano mushroom cook

While that’s cooking, grate up one block of pepper jack cheese. If you can find it try using Chihuahua as it is amazing too.

grate pepper jack

Toss it into a bowl along with your peppers and mushrooms.

Photo Feb 01, 2 30 45 AM

Add your chorizo.

Photo Feb 01, 2 32 33 AM

Mix well.

queso fundido mushroom stuffing

Again, using a teaspoon, melon baller or cookie scoop, scoop out a rounded scoop of this stuff.

Photo Feb 01, 2 35 40 AM

And pack it into one of your mushroom caps.

Photo Feb 01, 2 35 52 AM

What a gorgeous sight this!

stuffed mushroom

Fill all of them the same way.

queso fundido stuffed mushrooms

Pop them into a 350º oven for 20 minutes.

bake queso fundido stuffed mushrooms

By now they’ll be gloriously toasted and cheese will be melting down the sides of them.

Photo Feb 01, 3 25 41 AM

These would be the perfect addition to your Super Bowl menu for tonight.  They are absolutely delicious.

I sighed in happiness as I tasted one,  at my remembered favorite dish that I could now pop into my mouth in the form of a stuffed mushroom. I don’t miss that restaurant quite so badly now.

Queso Fundido Stuffed Mushrooms

 

Queso Fundido Stuffed Mushrooms

Yields 6

10 minPrep Time

20 minCook Time

30 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 (8 oz.) packages creaming or button mushrooms
  • 1 (10 oz.) package chorizo sausage
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 1 (8 oz) block pepper jack cheese, grated
  • 1-2 T. Olive oil (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Use teaspoon, melon balled or small cookie dough scoop to hollow out mushroom caps, reserving mushroom innards and stems. Chop innards and stem finely.
  3. Chop poblano pepper finely
  4. Brown chorizo in skillet over medium heat, about ten minutes until most of the liquid is gone.
  5. Remove with slotted spoon to strainer over bowl
  6. If desired, rinse with hot water to remove grease
  7. Drain all but a tablespoon of the oil out of pan and add chopped poblano and mushrooms. Sauté about five minutes. Add olive oil if pan gets dry.
  8. Grate cheese
  9. Add poblano/mushroom mixture to cheese.
  10. Add chorizo to bowl also and toss all well to combine.
  11. Use spoon, melon balled or cookie dough scoop to fill each mushroom cap, mounding each until mixture is all used.
  12. Bake on line cookie sheet for 20 minutes.
  13. Serve warm.
Recipe Type: Appetizer
7.6.4
712
http://www.dishinanddishes.com/queso-fundido-stuffed-mushrooms/

© Katie Johnstonbaugh and Dishin & Dishes, [2009-2013]. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katie Johnstonbaugh and Dishin & DIshes with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.