Key Lime & Coconut

My adventures in the world of food & wine

Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Junk-Food Masquerade

It's official. I'm bored out of my mind. This is my third day in a row free from exams, and I hardly know what to do with myself. I very well could have decided to make an elaborate meal for dinner tonight that would have taken hours and hours to complete, but I was just cooking for myself, and that seemed like a waste of energy. Instead, I decided on quick and healthy fare masquerading as junk food.

Lettuce Wrap "Tacos" are, believe it or not, South Beach Diet approved. Extra-lean ground beef, reduced-fat sour cream, low-sugar tomato sauce, and lettuce "tortillas" give you all the flavor without the fat and carbs. Great for feeding a crowd, or just yourself (hooray for leftovers!).

Lettuce Wrap "Tacos"
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 red or green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 c. low-sugar tomato sauce
  • 1 head of iceberg lettuce
  • Low-fat cheddar cheese, grated
  • Reduced fat sour cream
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the meat. Add the onions, bell pepper, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, spices (cayenne/cumin/ oregano), salt, and pepper. Cook for another 5 minutes or until onions and peppers are starting to soften. Add the tomato sauce. Turn off the heat. Serve the filling in heaping servings on single leaves of lettuce. Top with sour cream and cheese. (I sprinkled a bit of black lava Hawaiian sea salt on top as well for garnish.)

Suggested Wine Pairing:
I like my tacos with a nice big red wine, like a cabernet or a malbec. If you make these tacos really spicy, even though they're made with beef, you might enjoy the sweeter mouth-soothing taste of a California riesling. Of course, don't forget the classic Mexican food pairings: margaritas and cerveza!

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Anonymous Kristen said...

Bored?? Enjoy it while you can!

Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. It's something different that I think my family would love.

11:20 PM  
Anonymous veuveclicquot said...

yum. I love tacos, but I never eat them except in restaurants - this sounds so delicious and healthy. :)

5:23 PM  
Blogger rachel said...

I love those! There is am amazing restaurant called PF Changs that does an asian version for an appetizer. I started making my own version as well.

7:20 PM  

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