Serves 4.

Note: If you use ground turkey, don't choose extra lean for this dish. Fish sauce has a variety of names and flavors, including nam pla (Thai) and nuoc nam (Vietnamese). Look for it in the Asian section of your market.

• 1 tbsp. vegetable oil

• 1 lb. ground beef or turkey (see Note)

• 2 tbsp. fish sauce (see Note)

• 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice

• 2 tbsp. soy sauce

• 1/4 c. sliced fresh basil or chopped fresh cilantro

• 1 small bunch green onions, white and green parts, finely sliced (about 1 c.)

• 1 very small serrano or other hot pepper, minced

• 1 large head Bibb or romaine lettuce, leaves separated and gently rinsed


Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add meat and cook until no longer pink. Add fish sauce and cook until all liquid is gone from the pan, then cook a minute or two longer, until mixture starts to brown.

Meanwhile, stir together lime juice, soy sauce, basil or cilantro, green onions and pepper in a large serving bowl. Add hot meat and stir well. Serve warm with a separate bowl of whole lettuce leaves. Let diners add the meat mixture to lettuce leaves.