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Saturday, October 23, 2010

I'm a Copycat...no, really!

After being forcibly jacked out of my lovely Northern California by the economy, I missed some of the restaurant dishes that I enjoyed on my rare breaks from the kitchen. One of those dishes; "P.F. Chang's soothing lettuce wraps" was definitely on that list. So, after the usual web-crawling, I settled on a recipe that sounded like the real deal. You can find that version here.

As with most Asian recipes, the wraps are prep-heavy, and quick to cook. Here is a view of my prep for the wraps.



From left to right, shiitake mushrooms, ginger, garlic and jalapeno....minced scallions, water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, and rice noodles which have been fried until puffed up and crispy.  Next, marinating the chicken in a mixture that includes cornstarch, sherry and soy.

Then, wash and seperate some immaculate-looking iceberg lettuce leaves. A few have commented that they prefer romaine or butter lettuce for this, and I'm down with that. Whatever gets your crunch on for you best.

After stir-frying the chicken and the vegetation, adding in the easy-to-make sauce mix, and prepping the service bowl with the broken up rice noodles, we have a meal. 

The verdict? Really nice...what I love about the dish is the crunch factor of the lettuce, the crispy rice noodles as well as the bamboo shoots and water chestnuts. The crunchy blends nicely with the meaty chicken pieces and the wraps themselves leave you feeling full and satisfied, but not sack-of-quarters-in-my-stomach full and satisfied.

Which restaurant dish have you successfully re-created? Does it taste just like the original?

Eat well my friends, and prepare to have your sweet tooth satisfied with the desserts I'm making for the best crew in the world, the people I work with!

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