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Firecracker Vegetable Tempura Lettuce Wraps

Time 10 minutes
Yields Serves 4
Firecracker Vegetable Tempura Lettuce Wraps
(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)
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The best lettuce wraps cradle something hot and fatty. Case in point: tempura. Of course, you can make your own tempura, but my move is to pick up a box from a Japanese supermarket or sushi joint (or order extra online when getting Japanese food delivered) and throw together this dish in minutes.

1

If the tempura is fresh, set the pieces in a single layer on a wire rack to keep them crisp. If the tempura has been refrigerated, reheat in a toaster oven or an oven set to 400 degrees until crisp, 7 to 10 minutes. Cut into 1-inch-wide strips, if needed.

2

Meanwhile, whisk the tempura sauce, vinegar, chile and oil until well mixed.

3

Divide the tempura and avocado slices among the lettuce leaves. Drizzle the sauce all over, then top with the pepitas and rice crackers. Serve immediately.

Variations:
Shrimp Tempura and Avocado Lettuce Wraps: Substitute 6 shrimp tempura for the vegetable tempura, cutting off the tails and slicing each piece crosswise in half.