For dinner the other night, I wanted to do a lettuce wrap with tofu but also wanted a little meat on it. At the store, I was trying to decide on either lean ground beef or turkey when I spotted the bison meat on sale. Usually, these guys cost twice as much as the beef version but this time, it was the same price almost. Now, I thought it’s probably because I had to eat it within the next 24 hours before it goes bad… but no! It was good for another week or so. Cool!
Bison meat is very healthy. It’s actually more nutritious than chicken. The only beef (no pun intended) I have about it is that it’s a little on the bland side. Since it has very little fat, you really have to rely on seasonings to help bring out some flavor. I’ve had bison burgers in the past and I gotta tell ya, I’m just tired of pouring in so much ketchup just to liven it up, y’know. So in this dish, I seasoned it liberally with Chinese five spice, some soy sauce and fresh ground pepper. After all, with flavor challenged ingredients like bison and tofu on the forefront, you just gotta help kick it up a few notches ‘cuz they won’t do it by themselves.
But hey, I will tell you that this dish totally rocks! It is so refreshing and so filling. And you can easily make it vegetarian by simply omitting the meat and maybe doubling the amount of mushrooms.
1/3 lb Ground Bison
3-4 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1 Small Onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup Frozen Peas & Carrots
1 Portobello Mushroom, finely diced
1/2 bunch Scallions, finely chopped
1/2 cup Hoisin Sauce
1/2 of 14oz package Tofu, cut into half inch cubes
Butterhead Lettuce (Bibb or Boston)
Fresh Ground Pepper
Chinese Five Spice
1 tbs. Pure Sesame Oil
In a dutch oven (or large skillet), brown ground bison in a little canola oil over medium heat, seasoning with soy sauce, five spice and ground pepper as it cooks. When it’s almost done, add garlic, onions, peas & carrots, mushrooms and stir for about 5 minutes or so. Mix in the hoisin sauce and pure sesame oil. Stir to incorporate evenly. Turn off the heat and gently fold in the tofu being careful not to mash the cubes. Spoon mixture on lettuce leaves. Do not overload! Squeeze a little lemon juice and eat like you would a taco!