Thai Tofu Lettuce Cups
with rice / sesame green beans
Laab (or larb) is the Thai name for a stir-fry with fresh herbs and minced meat or tofu. Serve this tofu laab in lettuce cups with rice for a fresh Southeast Asian inspired meal.
- Rice, uncooked white or brown - 3/4 cup
- Tofu, extra firm (vacuum packed preferable) - 16 oz, finely chopped
- Garlic - 1 clove, chopped
- Ginger, fresh - 1 Tbsp, grated
- Lemongrass (opt) - 2 stalks, grated
- Jalapenos (opt) - 1/2, finely chopped
- Water - 3 Tbsp
- Soy sauce, low-sodium - 3 Tbsp
- Sugar - 1/4 tsp
- Cornstarch - 1/2 tsp
- Mint, fresh (opt) - 1 Tbsp, chopped
- Basil, Thai (opt) - 1 Tbsp, chopped
- Lettuce, romaine (sub butterhead) - 8 leaves
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Limes - 1/2, juice of
- Green beans - 1 lb, ends trimmed
- Oil, toasted sesame - 2 tsp
- Sesame seeds, white - 2 tsp
- Cook rice - Double if making Thursday’s meal. For white rice, rinse until clear. Fill a saucepan or Dutch oven (or rice cooker) with rice, water (use 2:1 ratio for water to rice), and some salt. Cover with lid and bring to a boil. Once water boils, stir, lower heat to a low-medium, and cover. Check white rice after ~20 min; brown at ~45 min. Rice is done when it's absorbed all the water. If it's not done, leave the cover on until all water has been absorbed. Take cover off to release steam and fluff with a wooden spoon after 5 minutes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Tofu - If tofu is packaged in water, press out liquid first. Then finely chop (it should resemble ground meat) and season with salt and pepper. (Can be done up 1 day ahead)
- Garlic / Ginger / Lemongrass / Jalapenos - Prep as directed and combine. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Make sauce - Combine water, soy sauce, sugar and cornstarch. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Pre-cook beans - Place green beans into a microwave-safe container. Sprinkle with some salt, cover with a damp paper towel, and microwave until tender, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Alternatively, boil beans in a large stock pot of salted water until tender, ~5 minutes. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
- Mint / Basil - Chop and combine.
- Lettuce - Separate leaves.
- Heat a wok over medium-high heat. Add cooking oil and then garlic, ginger, lemongrass and jalapenos. Saute until fragrant and lightly browned, ~2 minutes. Add tofu and saute until heated through and dry, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add sauce and bring to a simmer. Simmer until sauce thickens and coats tofu, ~1 minute. Remove pan from heat and stir in mint and basil. Squeeze lime juice over top and season with salt and pepper. Transfer tofu to a serving platter. Wipe out wok and return to heat.
- Add green beans, sesame oil and sesame seeds and saute just to heat beans through.
- If rice was made ahead and refrigerated, reheat it briefly in the microwave or in a saute pan with some oil over medium heat just to take the chill off. (If doubled, remember to save half the rice for Thursday.)
- Fill lettuce cups with rice and tofu. Serve with green beans on the side and enjoy!
Forgot the lime, great simple meal0 Helpful
Too salty. I don't know if I overdosed the soy sauce but it was salty.0 Helpful
Next time will double the sauce. Boiled the green beans instead of sautéing.0 Helpful
Used sugar snap peas instead of green beans. Overall good.0 Helpful
I added a zucchini to the green beans, and it was a HUGE plate. For 400 calories?!?!? Amazing.0 Helpful
Easy to make and tasty. Loved the string beans. A little salty although I used low sodium soy sauce. Forget the lemongrass, took too long to grate. I always do more meat and double the sauce for my family since my teenager and husband are big eaters. We also like leftovers.0 Helpful