There’s only one upside to having my mom gone, and that’s the state of the kitchen

not being in disaster mode 80% of the time. I love her to death, and she knows that,

but the way she works in the kitchen is completely chaotic. Hellish? Maybe. All I

know is that I cringe while she’s in the midst of her cooking process, even though I

know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel with her food I’ll get to enjoy. She hates

it when I watch her cook because the little nagging organizer on my shoulder takes

over and I begin putting everything on the counters back, most of the time

before she even uses it! 

I’m glad that my mom is finally able to enjoy her time the way that she wants to- for

years I listened to her talk about her ambitions while being stuck at an unfulfilling

job that limited her ability to actually do the things she wanted. There’s nothing that

makes me happier than knowing she is finally spending her time the way that she

wants to.

On a less sappy note, I’m sure she’s told you that I love anything and everything

Asian-inspired. It makes Jacob cringe because that’s just about his least favorite

style of food- but unless he’s getting in the kitchen to make dinner, I suppose my

vote overrides his! I was perusing Pinterest the other day and saw a photo of lettuce

wraps and instantly deemed it worthy of being on the menu this week. The recipe I

found was actually for PF Chang’s Chicken Lettuce Wraps, but I wound up changing

it a bit. Here’s what I used:

2 Boneless Chicken Breasts (pounded to oblivion, for mine)

1 Cup Mushrooms

1 Cup Red Cabbage

2 Carrots

2 stalks Green Onion

1 can Diced Waterchestnuts (for me only!)

1 head Bibb Lettuce

1 Cup Rice


Minced Garlic

Soy Sauce


Sriracha (I’m almost positive that’s spelled wrong)

Green Onion

Rice Vinegar

Sesame Oil

–Didn’t use specific measurements and ended up adding more of things here and there, but it was somewhere in the realm of 1/4 C soy, 3 tbsp honey, a handful of chopped onion, 2 tsp rice vinegar, 1 tbsp sesame oil, and 1/4 C minced garlic, because you can never have too much garlic!

More often than not, when I find a recipe it’s more for inspiration than actually

needing the recipe. The original recipe called to ground the chicken in a food

processor, but Jacob likes his meat normal- if it were up to him, the chicken breasts

would stay whole. However, I met him in the middle and only chunkily chopped his

into bigger pieces, while I pounded mine down and chopped it up into the smallest

pieces I could. I swear I’m 24 and not 4  So, with the bigger pieces, I threw them

into a pan over medium/high heat with just a dab of coconut oil and let them cook

most of the way. While this was happening, I mixed everything for the sauce

together and set aside. After that, I tossed in half of the veggies and half of the sauce

while I let the chicken finish cooking and the sauce thicken a bit. I cheated and

stopped on my way home from work and picked up a box of white rice from a local

Chinese Restaurant – I was starving and not about to wait 30 minutes to cook my

own rice. I put a cup of rice on the bottom of the bowl, then layered on the

chicken/veggie mix, topped with more green onion (always more, never less!) and

had a plate with leaves of Bibb lettuce ready for the picking. I repeated the cooking

process for my miniscule chicken, and did the same in my bowl. While looking at the

lettuce and thinking about how hungry I was, instead of making a mess with lettuce

wraps, I actually ended up chopping the lettuce up and adding that to my bowl, so it

turned into more of an Asian-inspired Burrito Bowl- yay!

This took only about 20 minutes to whip up since I cheated with the rice, and it was

worth every second of it! It’s the best when things work out in my favor when

cooking- my plans don’t always go so smoothly! But this was definitely amazing and

even Jacob agrees!

Hope everyone has an awesome day & finds whatever inspires you- life is too short

to live a life you don’t want! And while I normally hate our kitchen tornado, I trust

that my mom is making a new one wherever she is…and maybe I’ll admit I don’t

mind it all that much because it means having her here.


PS- sorry for those of you who panicked because this post was so late!





(Thank you, Nana for my meat tenderizer!!!)



My chicken- as small as possible Smile







And then turned into a lettuce bowl more than a wrap…