San Choy Bow (Lettuce Cups)
San Choy Bow, or lettuce cups as most of you will know, is a Chinese cuisine that has become very popular over the past few years with many households having their own recipe that is comprised of very much the same ingredients with an array of different spices and vegetables mixed and matched to create a more personalised experience.
The key difference and also why these are so popular among many is the use of any minced protein you deem fit. Originally in China pigeon minces were wrapped inside a lettuce leaf. However, in Australia, the pigeon mince has been substituted for mainly pork minces but can can be switched up for your favourite lean beef mince, chicken mince or lamb mince if you so desire.
San Choy Bow is also a very easy and extremely satisfying dish that is both fun to cook and eat, which can be personalised further with your own garnishes or favourite sauces drizzled on top.
For this recipe we have chosen some traditional flavours accompanied by our own additions that we feel really brings out the best in this amazing dish, while keeping it simple for the first time cooks who want to know what all the fuss is about.
All of these ingredients are very easy to find at your local supermarket with some being everyday items you may already have in your cupboard.
See above for a rough guide on how each ingredient should be sliced or diced.
Anyway, enough about the dish, lets get cooking!
San Choy Bow (Lettuce Cups)
500g Lean Beef Mince
Honey - 3 Tbsp
Soy Sauce - 1/3 Cup
Fresh Ginger - 2 Tbsp
Minced Garlic - 1 Tbsp
Oyster Sauce - 1/4 Cup
Cornflour - 1 Tbsp
Green Onion / Shallots - 3 Stalks
Vermicelli Noodles / Angel Hair - 250g
Fresh Cayenne Chilli - 2
Brown Onion - 1
Green Beans - 300g
Little Gem Lettuce - 2 Pack
Kewpie Mayo for Taste
Pickled Ginger to Garnish
Put ½ a packet of Vermicelli Noodles in a large heat proof bowl. Cover with boiling water and let stand for 5min. Drain in a colander and run cold water over the noodles to cool them off.
Drain noodles again then using scissors cut noodles into about 4cm long strands approximately. Put aside.
Cut 300g green bean (topped and tailed) into ~2cm long battens. Place for 1 min in salted boiling water then refresh under cold water. Put aside.
Dice brown onion. Remove root of Shalotts, slice white end only semi fine.
Peel and dice fresh Ginger (can substitute for crushed ginger in jar).
Sauté onion, shallots and ginger in a pan on relatively high heat till tender and a little colour.
Add Garlic fine chopped and 1-2 fine chopped Cayenne Chillies, no seeds. Cook out for 2 min (minced garlic in jar will do).
Add 500g mince, brown and cook until most (almost all) of the moisture is gone.
Add 1Tbsp cornflour and cook out for about 5 min. Will slightly thicken but should also get slightly crispy.
Add ¼ cup oyster sauce, 1/3 cup soy sauce and 3Tbsp honey. Cook out till soy reduces by half. About 5min. It will thicken because of the cornflour so be careful at this point not to burn. Drop heat to low.
Take meat off the heat. Stir through the green beans and noodles.
Mix is ready to serve. Serve in lettuce cups. Enjoy.
- Adam Lee