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~ Clock ticking? Wrap it up or make a lettuce wrap! ~

IMG_0351Necessity is the mother of invention!

"Necessity is the mother of invention" is a proverb ascribed to the Greek philosopher Plato and it means:  difficult or impossible scenarios prompt inventions aimed at reducing the difficulty of the task.  We've all been there:  there's only two minutes left on the game clock before you've got to run out the door and you and/or yours are starving.  Lettuce wraps require zero culinary skill, no effort and about one minute of the time remaining on the clock.  I'm rather certain that lettuce wraps were invented by someone in a big hurry and in desperate need of a grab-and-go meal!

IMG_0338What's the difference between a wrap and lettuce wrap?

IMG_0407A "wrap" is a type of roll-up sandwich made with a soft flatbread (usually a tortilla, lavash or pita) wrapped around a cold filling.  

A "lettuce wrap" substitutes a large lettuce leaf in place of the bread (I like Boston "bibb" or iceberg).  

The Mexicans, Armenians and Greeks have been eating wraps for centuries, while lettuce wraps have been eaten in Asian cuisines for centuries.  In the case of both, because neither the bread nor the lettuce leaf contribute any flavor to the meal, the filling or condiments need to provide some extra "zing":

IMG_0334 IMG_0401Anything you would put between two bread slices to construct a cold sandwich can be used as a filling for a wrap or a lettuce wrap, and, anything can be chosen as a condiment as well, but, make sure the flavors complement each other, meaning: Don't pair grilled Thai chicken strips with Mexican-style salsa verde!

IMG_0413It didn't take me more than one wrap to realize that I needed to add substantially more zingy ingredients than I normally would.  Three of my favorite on-hand ingredients are:

Pickled ginger and/or my recipes for ~ My Ultimate Sandwich Topper: Pickled Onions ~ and ~ Summer Soul Salad:  Pickled Cucumbers & Onions ~ which can both be found in Categories 2, 4, 8 or 20!

Unlike creamy condiments (which can make wraps soggy if not used judiciously and correctly) these are full of flavor and crunchy texture!

That's a wrap!

I hope you've enjoyed this short and sweet Sunday afternoon commentary.  I wasn't planning on this "no-recipe quickie-snack" becoming a post, but, I served these for brunch this morning (using grilled chicken thighs from last night's dinner and cucumber salad from Friday's blog post).  Joe said, "Mel, these are delicious", "you should take a few photos and write about them"!

IMG_0353"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2013) 


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