Whenever someone says “it’s where east meets west”, the phrase conjures up two very different images in my mind.
The stupid part of my mind thinks of planet Earth as one of those pyjama holders that zip up at the back – east being one side of the zip, west being the other.
The slightly more mature hemisphere of my brain imagines places like Singapore, Tokyo, the Silk Route and Marco Polo, and Chinese junks sailing amidst great tankers in Shanghai Harbour… lunch today was just like both of these ideas.
A concept we’ve taken from a Paleo diet plan, this dish is a cross between an old room-service favourite – the club sandwich – and the Chinese delicacy san choy bow – a mixture of pork mince and vegies you wrap in a lettuce leaf.
This version’s gluten free, just the way Mrs Romance likes it and carb free, just the way my belly likes it! You can change or add bits to it though if you wish.
Here’s what you need:
- 3 bacon rashers
- 1 chicken breast – cut into strips
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 a tomato – sliced
- 4-6 lettuce leaves – lettuce like iceberg is a good one as it holds its shape well and is nice and crunchy
- Tablespoon of rice flour (you can use normal white flour if you like. Rice flour makes this gluten free)
- Tablespoon of corn flour – which is a natural meat tenderizer, thank you very much!
- Salt and pepper to season
Here’s what you do:
- Cook the bacon up until it’s nice and crispy, then set it aside.
- While the bacon’s sizzling away, mix the corn flour and rice flour, salt and pepper in a bowl.
- Put the chicken in the bowl, fit a plate or another bowl on top and shake well to coat the chicken.
- Fry the chicken in the fat from the bacon until golden. You may need a touch more oil.
- While the chicken’s a-cooken, slice the avocado into… well, slices and place it in the lettuce leaves. You can mash the avocado and spread it on the lettuce if you like, it’s up to you.
- When the chicken’s ready, put it and the bacon in the lettuce and serve.
- Pop on a few slices of tomato and a tiny bit of salt. Why not garnish with a scattering of coriander?
- If you like, you can add mayonnaise, but your lunch will be healthier without it. And I hate myself for saying bad things about mayo.
To eat, bunch the loose top ends up then carefully bend the sides in the same way you would a soft tortilla. Eat the crunchy stem part first and cup the rest in your hand like a baby bird.
These don’t make great for lunchbox meals as they can be messy, and the kids would just eat the meat and avo and leave the tomato and lettuce. However, for a Saturday lunch or even an interesting entrée for a dinner party, these will ‘san choy wow’. Sorry.