Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer Spring Rolls

Summer Spring Rolls by Chelsea and Aunt Barbara

Chelsea and I made these Spring Rolls last summer at the lake -- they are easy to make once you get the hang of working with the rice-paper round wrappers.

The first step is to cook the shrimp and drop it into an ice bath to cool them done.  This can be done ahead of time.  Then peel them and dry.  Slice each one in half, lengthwise.
Then soak your noodles.  We used cellophane noodles.  You can use soba or whatever you like.  Cook per the instructions, then drain well.  Be sure they are cool.

Slice thinly 2 or 3 green onions or scallions.

Add a jalapeno pepper for some heat.  We were using the one Uncle Tom grew.  If you don't have a jalapeno, just add red pepper flakes later when you make the sauce.

Be sure to chop the jalapeno very fine so no one gets too big of a bite of heat.

The next step is to add some crunch.  I had shredded carrots, but you could use any veggie:  cucumbers, bean sprouts, sliced napa cabbage.

Add the drained, cool noodles and your sauce and toss.

For your sauce, I always concoct something but here is a suggestion:  2 T. hoisin sauce, 1.5 T. lime juice, 1.5 t. fish sauce, 1.5 t. peanut butter or peanut sauce, pinch of brown sugar.  I usually add soy sauce, too. 
Then add lots of fresh basil.  Toss it all together again, and be sure that the ingredients are evenly distributed.

The rice-paper wrappers are very thin, stiff circles that come in a package in the International aisle of the grocery store.

Chelsea used a pie plate filled with lukewarm water to soften one at a time.  She slid them in starting with one edge until it was fully emerged.

The rice wrapper will soften in about 30 seconds but still hold its shape.  Pull it out and put it on a flat surface to fill.

Place 4 halves of shrimp in the middle of the wrapper, then the filling, about 1/2 cup.  Fold the sides in, then top flap, roll it together and place it seam down.

Here's a very full spring roll.  Slice in half and serve. 

The sweet meat of shrimp goes well with all of the fresh basil, plus there is a nice contrast between the crunchiness of the veggies and the softness of the noodles.  The sauce is salty and spicy.  Delicious on a summer day! 


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