If galangal is unavailable in your area, you may substitute grated fresh ginger or ground ginger.
• 2 tablespoons uncooked rice
• 1 teaspoon light olive oil
• Dash of toasted sesame oil
• 1 pound skinless chicken breast meat, trimmed of all fat and chopped in a food processor
• 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh lemongrass, or 2 teaspoons dried
• 1/2 teaspoon ground galangal
• 1 red onion, very thinly sliced
• 1/4 cup chopped green onions
• 2 tablespoons fish sauce
• 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
• 3 cups cooked rice noodles
• 12 mint leaves, sliced
• 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
• 4 cups torn lettuce
1. Toast the rice in a small dry skillet over medium-high heat. When it is a lovely golden brown, tip it into a grinder or blender container and grind to a fine flour.
2. Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, pour in the oils, and add the chicken. Sprinkle in the lemongrass and galangal, stir, and continue cooking until the chicken is just done. Transfer the chicken to a bowl and add the toasted rice, onions, fish sauce, and lime juice; mix well.
3. Toss the warm rice noodles with the mint and cilantro. Make a bed of lettuce leaves on each plate. Top with a nest of noodles and spoon the spicy chicken and onions on top.
Per Serving: calories, 305; fat, 4 g; cholesterol, 62 mg; sodium, 403 mg; carbohydrates, 36 g; dietary fiber, 2 g; protein, 28 g.
Kathleen Halloran, editor of The Herb Companion, regularly cruises her kitchen and garden in Laporte, Colorado, looking for herbs.
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