Lettuce Wraps with Five Spice Flank Steak and Peanut Sauce

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-SauceI’m really into Google Analytics. 

For the past few years, GA has been a perpetually open tab on my computer screen, and I often find myself mesmerized by its knowledge and general wizardry. Google can tell me how many wonderful people are on this site at any given time, what brought them here, what they’re looking at, how long they stay, the city they’re in, and so, SO much more. It’s awesomely creep-tastic, and I love it. (I like to Gchat my friend Annie to ask if she’s on the site when there’s a dot in San Francisco. Every once in a while it really is her, and it’s like I have ESPN or something.)

While it’s helpful to know what recipes readers dig the most (mostly chia pudding and overnight oats, you weirdos) and other demographic info, the Google search queries that lead new users here are the best. These random searches bring an absurd amount of joy and awkwardness to my day, so I thought I’d share a few of my recent (and least offensive) favorites with all of you. I can only hope these peeps found what they were looking for, but in case they didn’t, I’ve answered their queries to the best of my ability below…

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-2Domesticate ME!’s Favorite Google Search Queries:

*For the sake of authenticity, all queries have been copied exactly as they were typed.

How does nutella work
Excellent question. It’s a combination of chocolate, hazelnuts and magic. You should put it in French toast. 

DRINKING FROM WATERMELON ALCOHOL
What an excellent idea! May I suggest a Sparkling Watermelon Punch Scorpion Bowl?

Diets for dudes
YASSSSS. You came to the right place.

Why do people take immodium at Widespread Panic concerts?
Ugh. So many reasons, but this is not the appropriate place to discuss them. Hint: Parking lot burritos, long port-a-potty lines, and other (slightly less legal) things.

Why can’t I find healthy pizza
The struggle is real, but these are some good options.

Super hot bikini babes.
While this isn’t that type of site, I do have an affinity for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition. Do with that what you will.

Gluten-free diet, can you eat peanut butter and bananas
Yes, yes you can. And you should eat them in the form of these GF overnight oats.

Badass lasagna
I like to think this skillet version qualifies.

Shaved cook- shaved Brussels sprouts salad.
The beginning of this query felt overly personal, but I do make a very nice shaved Brussels sprout salad

fall vegetsbles for a wuesodilla
Luckily, I speak drunk Googler. They must have been looking for this delightful fall vegetable quesadilla.

domesticate me butt chicken
It warms my heart someone was searching the interweb for this recipe! It’s an oldie but a goodie. (“butt chicken” is actually “Beer Butt Chicken,” in case you were upset by the name.) 

widespread panic sexy women
Heyo! You found me.

why do white flour and chocolate meks me sweat
I’m not a doctor, but I do know a Dude with a refined carbohydrate fetish. Again, Dude Diet to the rescue..

how to make Chia pudding not slimy
I’m afraid that’s impossible, friends. However, adding a little yogurt to this base recipe can help.

hummus for people who hate hummus
This is the silky smooth miracle hummus that converted me. It may be able to do the same for other hummus haters.

a recipe for a vat of corn
I’m not sure exactly what qualifies as a “vat” (although I have some very funny images in my head), but this Mexican Street Corn Salad should make a dent in it.

Craving dominos diet
Dude. Diet. Get on board.

Best effing chicken
Toss-up between the Faux-tisserie bird and Jamie Oliver’s Milk Chicken. Both warrant multiple happy expletives.

Glitter beef.
YOU’RE LOOKING AT IT, FRIENDS.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-3I’m not sure what the person searching “glitter beef” hoped to find, but in my mind, it was something like these Lettuce Wraps with Five Spice Flank Steak and Peanut Sauce. In fact, I’m thinking about renaming them “Glitter Beef Wraps,” since their current title is long and sort of awkward sounding, and I can only imagine how excited Logan someone would be to hear, “Hurry! The Glitter Beef Wraps are ready!!”

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-4Let’s briefly break down the glitter-y aspects of these bad boys, shall we? First, we’ve got gloriously juicy, flavor-packed flank steak that’s rubbed with Chinese five spice powder and plenty of salt, then quickly seared on a hot grill(pan). If you’re not familiar with five spice, it’s a blend of cinnamon, fennel, cloves, star anise and white pepper that’s warming, earthy, and magical. You can find it in the spice aisle of most markets, and while I know some of you are rolling your eyes at the prospect of adding a seemingly obscure spice to your collection, I really need you to trust me on this one and go get some. After making this beef, you can use the powder in marinades and salad dressings, as seasoning for vegetables and grains, and to amp up your basic stir-fry. Do it.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-5After a few minutes of resting, the glitter beef gets sliced, nestled in lettuce cups, piled high with crunchy vegetables, chopped peanuts and fresh cilantro, and then drizzled with a generous amount of truly epic peanut sauce. I’ve made many a peanut sauce in my day, but I can honestly say that this one, with its Sriracha-induced kick and subtle coconut flavor, is my favorite version yet. If you have any leftovers (you probably won’t), try tossing it with some soba noodles OR roasted broccoli. Heaven.

I’m also pleased to report that Glitter Beef Wraps are compatible with a wide variety of trendy lifestyles, as they happen to be paleo, gluten-free (just sub tamari for soy sauce), and 100% Dude Diet approved. Hallelujah.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-10But wait, there’s more! Perhaps the most exciting thing about these glittering beef flavor bombs is the fact that they can be made from start to finish in 30 minutes. No joke. You whip up the peanut sauce and prep the veggies while the steak is coming to room temperature/absorbing the wonders of five spice, and then you just set everything out and let people build their dream wraps. Bing, bang, BOOM. Weeknight finger food feast!

Make like Mariah and get your glitter on, peeps.

Lettuce Wraps with Five Spice Flank Steak and Peanut Sauce: (Serves 4)

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-6Ingredients:
1 pound flank steak
1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
For the Peanut Sauce:
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon crunchy peanut butter
¼ cup light coconut milk (The kind in the can, peeps.)
1½ tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon Sriracha
½ teaspoon honey
1 small clove garlic, grated or finely minced
For Serving:
12-14 Boston or Bibb lettuce leaves
1 cup shredded or grated carrots
3-4 baby radishes thinly sliced into matchsticks
3 scallions, thinly sliced
¼ cups unsalted peanuts, chopped
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

Lettuce Wraps with Five Spice Flank Steak and Peanut Sauce:

-Pat your steak dry. Season it allllll over on both sides with the Chinese five spice and the salt. Let the steak hang out at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-step-1-Meanwhile, whisk together all the ingredients for the peanut sauce in a medium mixing bowl. Briefly set aside. Go ahead and prep your vegetables/garnishes now too.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-step-3-Pre-heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the steak and grill for 2-4 minutes per side for medium-rare. (I’m sorry!! I really wish I could give you a more specific cooking time, but flank steak varies significantly in thickness. Mine was a ¼-inch thick and only needed 2 minutes per side.)

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-step-2-Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 5 minutes. Slice it in half lengthwise, and then slice cross-wise into ½-inch strips. Transfer the steak to a serving plate/platter.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-step-4-Time to assemble your lettuce wraps! I recommend just setting out the beef, sauce and garnishes and letting people go to town…

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-7But for those of you that like specific instructions: Place 2-3 slices of steak on top of each piece of lettuce. Top with some carrots, radishes and scallions. Drizzle with peanut sauce, then sprinkle with chopped peanuts and cilantro.

Lettuce-Wraps-with-Five-Spice-Flank-Steak-and-Peanut-Sauce-8

Lettuce Wraps with Five Spice Flank Steak and Peanut Sauce

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound flank steak
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • For the Peanut Sauce:
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon crunchy peanut butter
  • ¼ cup light coconut milk (The kind in the can, peeps.)
  • 1½ tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • ½ teaspoon honey
  • 1 small clove garlic, grated or finely minced
  • For Serving:
  • 12-14 Boston or Bibb lettuce leaves
  • 1 cup shredded or grated carrots
  • 3-4 baby radishes thinly sliced into matchsticks
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cups unsalted peanuts, chopped
  • ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

Instructions

  1. Pat your steak dry. Season it allllll over on both sides with the Chinese five spice and the salt. Let the steak hang out at room temperature for 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together all the ingredients for the peanut sauce in a medium mixing bowl. Briefly set aside. Prep your vegetables.
  3. Pre-heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the steak and grill for 2-4 minutes per side for medium-rare. I WISH I could give you a more specific cooking time, but flank steak varies significantly in thickness. I’m sorry! (Mine was a ¼-inch thick and only needed 2 minutes per side.)
  4. Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 5 minutes. Slice it in half lengthwise, and then slice cross-wise into ½-inch strips. Transfer the steak to a serving plate/platter.
  5. To assemble your lettuce wraps: Place 2-3 slices of steak on top of each piece of lettuce. Top with some carrots, radishes and scallions. Drizzle with peanut sauce, then sprinkle with chopped peanuts and cilantro. (I recommend letting people assemble their own wraps, but do as you see fit.)
http://domesticate-me.com/lettuce-wraps-with-five-spice-flank-steak-and-peanut-sauce/

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  • Annie

    I cry-laughed a bit reading the Google queries… Especially this one:

    fall vegetsbles for a wuesodilla

    Luckily, I speak drunk Googler.

    • Serena_Wolf

      Hahahaha glad you appreciated these! They kill me. (And remind me never to let anyone look at my own Google searches…)

  • Mimi

    You crack me up! Lovely wraps. I don’t love bread that much, especially sandwich bread, so this is right up my food alley. I do use lettuce when I make tunafish salad, like with canned tuna. not fancy, but it’ handy for a quick lunch for myself!

    • Serena_Wolf

      Thank you, Mimi! And I’m ALLL about the lettuce wraps too. While I appreciate a really good sandwich from time to time, I always find lettuce wrapping things much more flavorful.

  • Sydney

    Hiii its me – Syd. I was going to text you, but I figured I would make it official and use the discussion board. My questions is – whats the difference/pros of using a grill pan vs cast iron skillet. I often make my steak just using a cast iron skillet and searing it but I’ve been seeing the use of the grill pan really coming to vogue, so just wondering!

    • Serena_Wolf

      HAHAHA oh hi! I love me a discussion question. So, here’s
      the deal on grill pans. Basically, anything that I would ordinarily want to
      cook on an actual grill, I cook using my grill pan (because I live in NYC and am not Beyoncé and will probably not have a real grill for many years). But that is mostly just for grill marks and the “feeling.” Using a grill pan imparts none of the smoky flavor that a grill does, so you could definitely use your cast iron skillet in its place. But as a visual person, I highly recommend getting a grill pan for the marks alone…

      • Sydney

        Ok great – Thank you for the speedy reply. Are there any tricks to the grill pan? Or just heat it up for a few minutes and then you are good to go…

        • Serena_Wolf

          No tricks! Just make sure it’s really clean (or it will smoke), and let it pre-heat for at least 5 mins before throwing anything on it!

          • Sydney

            Ok and last question – which one should I buy?

          • Serena_Wolf

            I have the standard Calphalon grill pan, and it has served me well for many years!

  • Molly

    So I have become a bit of a junkie for your recipes these days..not a bad one yet, btdubs, but holy wow, just made these tonight and they were seriously AMAZING! I was a little skeptical with the whole steak grill pan thing but it turned out deeeliciois and so easy. Thanks for making me seem like a good cook (and eating better too!)

    • Serena_Wolf

      LOVE to hear this! And even more thrilled that you are making so many recipes and coming off as a culinary wizard. It literally warms my heart. xx

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