My streamlined pork meat ball version comes together in a snap by using less expensive and more readily available ingredients, but keeps with tradition by including raw fruit in the garnishes.  The addition of slices of sweet and crunchy apple punch up the sweetness of this well balanced lettuce wrap.  

Salad wraps can be customized to suit finicky eaters, but everyone at the table will love this crunchy hand held salad.  Feel free to vary the toppings according to your personal tastes.  Just be sure to serve this family friendly salad with plenty of napkins!

Quick Kitchen Tip: Carrot Ribbons

Carrot ribbons add texture variety to everyday dishes.  There is no need to use a fancy tool to create delicate carrot curls; use a standard vegetable peeler to create carrot ribbons suitable for use in this salad or any other.  

  1. Peel the carrot to remove the outer skin as you would for any recipe.
  2. Lay the carrot on a cutting board with the flattest side of the carrot facing up.
  3.  Pressing slightly harder than normal, drag the peeler from the top of the carrot to the tip.
  4. The resulting ribbon will be about 1/8” thick and curl with ease.

Ginger Pork Lettuce Wraps (makes 6 servings)

If you are pressed for time simply sauté the seasoned pork mixture in a non-stick skillet.  Place cooked ground meat in the lettuce leaves and top as the recipe indicates.

For the Meatballs:

  • 1 Pound Ground pork*
  • ¼ Cup Cilantro, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Red onion, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Salt and pepper

For Serving:

  • 12 whole butter lettuce leaves
  • 1/3 Cup diced red pepper
  • 1 Cucumber, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 1 Carrot, cut into ribbons
  • 1 Apple, cut into thin wedges
  • 12 Peapods, thinly sliced
  • 2 Scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1-2 Jalapeños or serranos, thinly sliced (optional)
  • Soy Sauce and a Squeeze of lemon
  • Sweet Chili Sauce (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Mix all of the meatball ingredients together until combined.  Using wet hands, form the pork mixture into 18 (1 ½”) meatballs.  Place the meatballs on a greased broiler pan and bake for 20 minutes (turning after 10 minutes) or until cooked through.

To serve, place three warm meat balls in the center of two stacked butter lettuce leaves.  Garnish with red pepper, cucumber, carrot, apple, peapods, scallions and jalapeno.  Add Soy sauce, lemon juice and optional sweet chili sauce and serve. Eat with your hands.

*ground chicken can be substituted for the pork.

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