Chicken, vegetables, rice combine for 'pick-me-up' meal


July 15, 1992|By Rita Calvert | Rita Calvert,Contributing Writer

Every culture has some kind of a meal in a wrapper. The wrap in France is the crepe. Mexicans use the tortilla or corn husks. In the Orient, the Japanese wrap of choice is seaweed, the Chinese use a very thin pancake.

The new twist in the menu offered here is an Oriental hand meal that comes wrapped in cabbage. It's fun for quick and casual entertaining or for the family.

The lightly steamed napa cabbage leaf encloses a colorful combination of vegetable sticks and deliciously seasoned chicken or meat. If you happen to have leftover cooked chicken, pork or beef, use that instead of buying roasted chicken.

The stir fry rice mixes are tasty and simple when microwaved. This leaves the stove top free for steaming. Start the rice just after you have microwaved the Oriental sauce.

A wok with a steaming rack and lid is perfect for this recipe, but you can improvise with any steamer and lid setup. Have the steaming water heating while you are slicing the vegetables and prepping ingredients.

For dessert, simply drizzle individual servings of frozen yogurt with about 1 to 2 tablespoons of Triple Sec, just before serving.

Items you should have in your pantry include: Triple Sec Liqueur, peanut butter, A-1 sauce, scallions, carrots and soy sauce.

Your 10-item-or-less shopping list:

Frozen yogurt (fruity flavor)

Oriental stir fry rice mix

Oriental plum sauce (at least 6 ounces)

1 medium red or yellow bell pepper

1 medium crookneck squash

1 head napa cabbage (not bok choy)

1 1/2 pounds cooked whole chicken or chicken parts

Oriental hand meal

Serves four.

3 tablespoons peanut butter

3 tablespoons A-1 sauce

1/2 cup Oriental plum sauce

1 medium red or yellow bell pepper, halved, seeded and cut lengthwise into 8 long strips

1 medium crookneck squash, halved lengthwise and cut into 8 long strips

4 scallions halved lengthwise

1 large carrot, halved and cut into 8 lengthwise strips

8 large whole leaves from head of napa cabbage (sometimes called celery cabbage) and 1-inch cut off stem edge

1 1/2 pounds roasted chicken, skin removed, meat in large shreds

Microwave the sauce ingredients for 2 minutes. Stir to combine. Toss 1/3 cup of sauce with chicken to season. Reserve rest.

When water is boiling, steam carrot strips for 2 minutes, covered. Top with pepper strips and squash strips and steam 2 more minutes. Finally, add scallions and cabbage leaves and steam 2 minutes.

Lay cabbage leaf on cutting board. Spread with 1 teaspoon sauce. At stem edge, place 1 stick each of carrot, squash, 1/2 scallion and one eighth chicken. Roll up tightly (starting at stem edge) and place on platter, seam side down. Repeat process 7 more times.

Serve at room temperature or reheat by microwaving all about 2 minutes. Pass soy sauce.

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