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Cooking with Dr. Weil: Tofu-Shiitake Lettuce Wraps


Continuing my way through Dr. Weil’s cookbook, I made this the other night in addition to my kids’ dinner because I assumed they would not eat it but I wanted to try it. Not only did they eat it, but they loved it so much they asked if we could have it all the time. I felt like I had hit a motherhood homerun. This recipe was super easy to make and the result is really impressive. Plus the leftovers kept really well and I had it for lunch the next day. One of my daughter’s fell in love with the jicama, which is a wonderful but often overlooked root vegetable. Jicama gives a great crunch to anything you might add it to (I love it on salads) and it assumes the flavors around it. Plus, it is packed with fiber and vitamin C.

It’s so easy to just make a salad or the same old dinner, but I always encourage my clients to try something new and think outside the box. The only way to truly have a healthy relationship with food is to be able to savor the things that nourish you. This is an amazing, healthy, delicious and nourishing recipe that I highly recommend you all to try. It just may be the perfect spice your diet is craving!

Tofu-Shiitake Lettuce Cups

1 tsp. salt
16 leaves butter lettuce
1 tbsp canola oil plus 1 ½ teaspoons expeller-pressed canola oil
5 ozs. tofu extra-firm, diced
2 ozs. shitake mushrooms stemmed and diced
1 scallion thinly sliced
¾ cup diced jicama
1 carrot shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler

Nestle 1 lettuce leaf partially inside another leaf to make a large cup and do the rest with the remaining lettuce leaves making 8 cups and set aside.

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

In a skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers.

Add the tofu, shiitakes and Wok Aromatics. Cook until the tofu starts to brown.

Lower the heat the medium and add the teriyaki sauce. Cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon, about 5 minutes.

Add the chopped scallion, jicama, cashews, and 1 ½ teaspoons of seasame seeds and cook for 30 seconds, stirring to combine. Divide the mixture among the cups.

Pour the vinegar mixture into a small bowl, and add the carrot, scallion, and remaining ¾ teaspoon sesame seeds. Toss well and divide among the lettuce cups before serving.

Wok Aromatics Recipe

1 stalk lemongrass thinly sliced
0 1/3 cup fresh ginger thinly sliced
5 scallions white part only, coarsely chopped
1.50 tsp. sambal oelek

Combine lemongrass, ginger and scallions in a food processor and pulse until finely minced.

Transfer mixture to a lidded jar, add the sambal oelek and mix well to combine.

Use immediately and freeze any left over.


Elissa Goodman

Holistic Nutritionist & Lifestyle Cleanse Expert, Los Angeles

Elissa Goodman

After being diagnosed with cancer when she was 32, Elissa Goodman explored holistic alternatives and combined them with traditional treatments and was able to beat the disease. Her husband wasn’t as fortunate; he succumbed to Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma when he was only 45 after a regimen of doctor-prescribed chemotherapy and two bone marrow transplants. Her personal experience led her to realize the many ways in which nutrition and lifestyle affect our ability to deal with health challenges.

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