Now that the weather is warming up and the days are getting longer, I thought it was the perfect time to share one of my favorite foods- Spring Rolls! This was something that was always so intimidating to me- it almost seems like an art to put together these beautiful and tasty rolls.
Last year, I finally bit the bullet and tried making them for myself. There was definitely a learning curve and practice involved, but they're actually pretty easy to make! I make them pretty regularly today, and I'll be sharing how I make them. There are other tutorials out there, and this might not be the proper way to make them, but I think they look pretty good and taste amazing!
The thing that I like the most about these rolls is the fact that they're completely customizable! I like to make shrimp rolls, but you can make it completely vegetarian, use other meats or put in tofu. You can also use any vegetables and fresh herbs that you have on hand. I love experimenting with different flavor combinations and textures! I'll be sharing my favorite combination today, and I hope that you enjoy!
Chop up all of your vegetables as thinly as you can. I used mushrooms, avocado and cucumbers. For herbs, I used basil and mint, and just roughly chopped them. I also used pre-cooked and deveined shrimp, and just thawed them and pulled off the tails.
Run water over the wrapper. It starts out very stiff and hard, and loosens up with water to become very sticky and flexible. You can also dip the wrapper in a bowl of water, but I find running water over it and holding it on each side help keep it from sticking together. You can find the wrappers at Asian food stores, or in the international aisle of the supermarket. Mine came in a large pack which I've been using for a while now!
Lay the wrapper as flat as possible on your surface. I use a silicone baking liner and find that the wrapper doesn't stick to it at all! Layer in your ingredients in a thin strip, leaving about an inch free on each end, and about 4 inches free on the top and bottom.
Start to roll! I fold the sides in first as tightly as possible, then bring up the bottom and tightly roll to the top. The wrapper sticks to itself very easily, so it takes some practice to get it to roll without having to adjust it too much, which can cause it to tear. Don't worry about messing up- it will still taste great, and you can always start over with a new wrapper.
Make as many rolls as you want! With the ingredients I showed above I was able to make about five large rolls. Prepare any dipping sauce if desired and enjoy!
The sauce that I made is a mixture of equal parts coconut aminos and rice vinegar, a tiny bit of grated ginger and a few drops of toasted sesame oil. I also love using Trader Joe's Island Soyaki or a peanut sauce!
I love making these for lunch or a snack. They last well over night (the avocado will turn slightly brown but will taste fine). If I don't feel like making rolls or don't have wrappers, I'll also use the same ingredients and throw it in a bowl for a spring roll salad!
Have you ever made spring rolls before?
What food seemed too intimidating to make until you tried it?
What's your favorite cuisine?
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