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Tofu-Shitake Lettuce Cups

A fusion of Mediterranena and Asian influence.

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A fusion of Mediterranena and Asian influence.

Makes 8 servings.


  • 2/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup evaporated cane sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 16 butter lettuce leaves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 5 ounces extra firm tofu, diced
  • 2 ounces shitake mushrooms, stemmed and diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 scallions, white part only, chopped
  • 2 cups Teriyaki Sauce (recipe follows)
  • 3/4 cup diced jicama
  • 1/4 cup roasted salted cashews
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 carrot, shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced

Teriyaki sauce:

  • 3/4 cup fresh pineapple
  • 1 apple, cored and cut into wedges
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 scallion, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce


1. In a small saucepan combine the vinegar, sugar, and salt over medium-high heat and cook until sugar and salt dissolve. Set aside.

2. Nestle 1 lettuce leaf partially inside another to make a large cup. Set on a platter and repeat to make 8 cups.

3. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the tofu, shitakes, ginger, and scallions. Cook until the tofu starts to brown. Lower heat to medium and add the Teriyaki Sauce. Cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Add the jicama, cashews, and half the sesame seeds and cook 30 seconds, stirring to combine. Divide the mixture among the lettuce cups.

4. Pour the vinegar mixture into a small bowl and add the carrot, scallion, and remaining sesame seeds. Toss well and divide among the lettuce cups before serving.

Teriyaki Sauce: Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low; cook for 20 minutes until fruit is soft. Let cool 20 minutes, then use a blender or immersion blender to purée until smooth. Store in an airtight container and stir before using.

Note: Making the teriyaki sauce is an extra step but means that you know you’re getting good-for-you ingredients. Make it up to three days ahead, or freeze for longer storage.

Also: Read the full article about Mediterranean cuisine, Food for Life.

Recipe reprinted with permission True Food: Seasonal Sustainable, Simple, Pure by Andrew Weil.

Nutrition Information

  • Calories 0
  • Carbohydrate Content 0 g
  • Cholesterol Content 0 mg
  • Fat Content 0 g
  • Fiber Content 0 g
  • Protein Content 0 g
  • Saturated Fat Content 0 g
  • Sodium Content 0 mg
  • Sugar Content 0 g
  • Trans Fat Content 0 g
  • Unsaturated Fat Content 0 g