Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Spring Rolls

Hi Friends.  Is everyone ready for Thanksgiving?  I'm hoping for a relatively easy but filling day.

But for tonight, I needed a light dinner.  When Jim drives in, he's generally pretty tired and has eaten something on the road.  It's been years since I've made spring rolls and I don't know why because I love them and they're quick, easy, and healthy.  Since it's been a while since I've made them, my rolling skills could use some work.  Since the spring roll wrappers are so extremely thin, I always double them up making them a bit easier to roll (purists must cringe at the thought).

I love this dish, at home or dining out.  I love the flavor, the texture, and the guilt-free eating.  I make it buffet-style so we can each add what and how much we want to our individual rolls.  I have my favorite dipping sauce, but I also keep sweet chili sauce    out  for an additional choice.  Amounts will vary on what you like and how many you plan to serve.   The ingredient list is simply a starting point.


spring roll wrappers
rice vermicelli noodles

green leaf or romaine lettuce leaves
fresh mint leaves
dilantro leaves
bean sprouts
carrots, cut into matchsticks
cucumber, cut into matchsticks
chopped peanuts
sliced green onions

raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
black pepper

Dipping Sauce:

Boil 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup sugar until sugar dissolves.  Let cool.  Add:

1 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 Tbsp lime juice
1/2 tsp freshly minced garlic

For the Spring Rolls:

If shrimp is frozen, thaw.  Dress uncooked shrimp with olive oil and black pepper.  Put under a broiler for 4-8 minutes, depending on size of shrimp (I used 51-60s for this, taking 3-4 minutes, stirring midway).  Let cool.  Refrigerate until time to use.

Prepare your vegetables.  Bring one pot of water to a boil.  Add the rice will only take a minute or two.  Drain.

For the wrappers, have a very hot (but not boiling) skillet or large shallow bowl of water.  You simply dip the wrappers through the hot water (careful not to burn yourself) and lay on a flat surface, such as a plate.  Fill with whatever and how much of the ingredients you like.  Roll burrito-style (fold ends up and the wrap the roll....the rice in the wrappers act as a natural "glue.")

Dip into dipping sauce or sweet chili sauce.

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