Rock ‘n Veggie Rolls

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This is a real crowd pleaser, they look like way more effort than they are, and once you make them yourself, I am certain you won’t buy the “asian appetizer sampler” from M&M ever again!

Start by browning both sides of firm tofu slices about 1/4” thick you will need three of them, season with S+P and brown in a blend of canola oil and sesame oil, set aside to cool a little. Add to the hot pan: 1 jalenpeno diced, 2 garlic cloves minced, 2” ginger knob finely grated and 1/4 of a red onion finely minced. Get these guys all browning and then add: 3 julienne carrots (sliced finely lengthwise). Reduce heat.  You want the carrot to get just tender… not cooked through, about 1-2 minutes only. Add equal parts about 1-2 tbsp each: soy sauce, rice vinegar, sweet chili sauce, and just a splash of sesame oil and coat mixture evenly. Turn off the heat, but leave your pan on the element and add two big handfuls of bean sprouts, 3 green onions diced, and your browned tofu now sliced like the carrots. Mix everything together and place in a bowl. Add a little cilantro chopped and a small handful of fresh spinich finely chopped. Toss everything and set aside to cool completely, then refrigerate until your almost ready to serve the spring rolls. Before using strain the juices from your filling.

I use commercially prepared egg roll wrappers, they are found in the asian section of your produce department usually, also you can get a huge variety of types and sizes from an Asian market. If you want to avoid frying you could use rice wrappers with the above filling prepared on a bed of vermicelli noodles or lettuce, this would be a great and much healthier alternative, in addition it would be of course gluten free and vegan as well if you took this route. The ones I am using in this contain both egg and wheat. But as we are committed to a sinful snack, I’ll get on with the fried version…

Take a wrapper and place the filling in the middle of the paper on the diagonal the filling should cover about 1/4 of the surface area . Now fold the left and right side tabs in and using a simple egg wash brush the remaining two flaps (top and bottom) fold the bottom up and over the sides and the filling and roll everything up to the top. You should have a lovely little spring roll ready for the fryer now. *** Make these in small batches and fry them shortly after you fill them, as the filling will make the wrapper soggy if you let them sit to long.

* Also careful not to overstuff or you will have exploding rolls in your fryer! Have a small heavy bottom pot going on medium high heat, you ideally want about 2-3 “ of canola oil in the pot, but you can use a frying pan and only 1/2” of oil but I find having them submerged makes a prettier looking spring roll. If you insert a wooden chopstick into the oil and use see tiny bubbles coming out the end of it, you‘ll know your oil is hot enough.. I have no idea what temperature that is, but thats my method and I am sticking to it. If you have a deep fat fryer (as the British call them) bust it out! Here is your chance to get frying!

Fry until golden brown then remove from heat and set on set over paper towel.

If I have time and I am entertaining I would create a vinegar dipping sauce, but often I just serve these with a store bought sweet chili dipping sauce, or hosin, or plumb sauce, so long as it’s stick and sweet you’ll be happy!

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