Taking its cue from the classic Thai combination of savory minced pork served with fresh pineapple slices, this dish is lovely on a warm summer night. All the finished ingredients are set out family style and diners assemble their own rolls. Hydroponic Boston lettuce has particularly nice leaves for rolling.
1. Add rice to a medium saucepan, rinse, and drain, keeping rice in pan. Add water and bring to a simmer over high heat. Stir well. Cover and reduce heat to mediumlow. Cook for exactly 10 minutes, then remove from heat, but do not remove lid. Set aside.
2. While rice is cooking, rinse and core lettuce, separating leaves and placing them on a serving platter. Drain crushed pineapple, finely chop bell pepper, and place each in a separate bowl. Thinly slice scallions and put in a small bowl.
3. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over medium-high heat. When hot, add ginger and garlic. Cook and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add pork, black pepper, and chili paste. Cook, stirring frequently to break up pork, until pork is cooked through, about 10 to 12 minutes; there should be no pink meat.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together fish sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and brown sugar.
5. Add sauce to pork and mix well. Simmer for 1 minute. Turn off heat. Stir in cilantro. Transfer pork to a serving bowl.
6. To serve, remove lid from rice, fluff it, and transfer to a serving bowl. Set lettuce platter and bowls on center of table and let everyone assemble their own lettuce rolls. Each lettuce leaf should contain a small amount of pork, pineapple, red pepper, and scallion, with rice served on the side. You'll be able to make about 24 rolls.
Suggestions: Preferred to use hydroponic Boston lettuce. Use fresh chili paste (sambal oelek) or use 3/4 tsp. Tobasco sauce. Thai fish sauce (nam pla).
Source: Hannaford fresh Magazine, May - June 2008