Thai Larb Lettuce Cups
with mango and cucumber salsa
In Thailand, larb is the name for a super simple dish of finely chopped protein sauteed with a bit of seasoning and tossed with fresh herbs and lime juice. We've given this dish a Cook Smarts twist by serving it in lettuce cups. This meal was last featured in 2021.
Smarts: As you might guess, larb is usually very spicy, so don't hesitate to add extra red pepper flakes or hot sauce if you'd like to serve it that way.
- Cucumbers - 8 oz , diced
- Mangos - 2 , diced
- Vinegar, rice - 1 tsp
- Garlic - 2 cloves , chopped
- Tamari - 3 Tbsp
- Fish sauce - 1 tsp
- Sugar - 1/4 tsp
- Red pepper flakes (opt) - 1/2 tsp
- Mint, fresh - 8 leaves , finely chopped
- Cilantro leaves - 1/4 cup , finely chopped
- Limes - 1 , wedges
- Lettuce, butterhead - 12 leaves (sub outer leaves from hearts of Romaine)
- Water - 1 Tbsp
- Cornstarch - 1 tsp
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Pork, ground - 1 lb
- Peanuts - 1/3 cup
- Hot sauce (opt) - for serving
Make sauce - Chop garlic. Combine garlic, Tamari, fish sauce, sugar, and red pepper flakes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Mint / Cilantro / Limes / Lettuce - Prep as directed. Combine mint and cilantro. Store limes and lettuce separately. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Make slurry - Whisk together water and cornstarch.
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Combine cucumbers, mangos, and vinegar.
Heat a wok or large skillet with oil over medium-high heat. Add pork and saute until nearly cooked through, ~5 minutes.
Add sauce and bring to a simmer. When sauce is simmering, give cornstarch slurry a stir and add it to pork. Stir everything together and continue cooking until sauce thickens and pork is fully cooked.
Remove pork from heat and stir in mint and cilantro. Squeeze half the lime wedges over top.
Assemble lettuce cups by filling lettuce leaves with pork, peanuts, and hot sauce (if using). Squeeze extra lime wedges over top. Serve mango cucumber salsa on the side or spoon some onto lettuce cups if you’d like. Enjoy!