Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Gluten Free Banh Mi Romaine Boats

Bursting with color and fresh flavor, this recipe is a gluten free version of the Vietnamese sandwich called a Banh Mi.  Traditionally served on a crusty and rich baguette, this style cuts calories and fat tremendously.  I enjoy the super crunch the Romaine lettuce provides, mimicking a crisp crusted bread.  There is no harm in eating 3 or 4, and not having to worry about the fallout.
The protein for this dish is marinated overnight, so this dish comes together quite literally in minutes if the prep work for the veggies is done ahead of time as well.  A mandolin makes crazy light work of the English cucumber and the radishes( I stacked the radishes after using the mandolin and cut them into matchsticks)  Pork is used for this recipe, as is in the traditional,  but I marinate this in a Chinese BBQ marinade to give it that brilliant color and flavor profile. I have written an adaptation to this marinade below to achieve very similar and desirable results.
Chinese BBQ Marinade:
1/2 c.beet juice
2 cloves fresh garlic, pressed or finely minced
2 tbsp. Cane or granulated sugar
1 tbsp. Chinese 5 spice
1 tbsp. white distilled vinegar
2 tsp. fish sauce or Miso
2 tsp. onion powder
Combine ingredients in small bowl.
1-1 1/2 lbs. pork loin, cut into thin strips
Pour marinade over protein, press out air in resealable bag, refrigerate 4 to 24 hours for fullest flavor and color.
When ready, drain.
Saute over medium-high heat until desired done-ness, at least 145*F.
Serves 4-6.

Radishes, matchsticks
English cucumber
Romaine Lettuce

Spicy Sweet Chili Sauce:
1/4 c. mayo or Greek Yogurt
2 tbsp. Sweet Asian Chili Sauce
1 tbsp. Sambal Oelek or to taste
1 tsp. Miso
Combine ingredients in small bowl.  Serve along side Romaine Boats.

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