Thursday, June 24, 2010

spring rolls

One of our favorite summer foods is spring rolls.  They're pretty easy, but kind of time consuming to make.  Plus, you get to eat them with peanut sauce and it's hard to go wrong with that.  We made up one meal's worth today with a couple left over.  For how much work they are I'd prefer getting 2 meals out.  Not much was local today, just the lettuce, shallot (left over from the winter) and scallions.  Later in the summer you can imagine what else might be local.

Here's the goods:

Remnant of a pineapple


A couple carrots


Hot dog (I wasn't into this, but I put it in Kate's)

rice noodles (we used soba)

scallions (mine)

rice paper wrappers

mint leaves, basil would also be nice...

Peanut sauce:

Shallot-1 minced

Garlic (4 cloves, but they were big) minced

Chili powder (1.5T)

Olive oil

1 can coconut milk

3/4 peanut butter (unsalted natural for us)

2t soy sauce

1T ginger (grated or minced)

1c stock (we just made some yesterday!  Watch for that story soon.)

1.5T tamarind paste or1T honey and 3T lemon juice

The plan:

1) Start a pot of water to boil and chop everything into matchsticks except the lettuce and as noted.

2) Make noodles according to the directions

3) Start peanut sauce: in a small saucepan pour in the oil and the chili powder and let it warm until it's fragrant.  Then throw in the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and shallot and let everything get soft.

4) In a separate saucepan warm the stock then mix in the peanut butter.  Once that's in add the coconut milk, chili/shallot/garlic mixture, tamarind (or honey/lemon).  Leave it on the stove on low for the rest of the night.  Stir it a bit.  Maybe add a splash of lemon juice or lime juice.  You can store it in a container in the fridge for about 2 weeks.  It never seems to last that long at our house.

5) Pull the noodles out of the water, rinse them and dry them as well as you can.

6) Put some warm water into a pie pan.  Drop in one rice paper wrapper.  Let it get soft, pull it out and drop some a small pile of goods into it.  Roll it up like a burrito.  Eat the first one to make sure there's decent quality in all the goods and to practice rolling (do not announce that you are doing this, pretend you haven't started making them yet).

I piled in the following way:

For Kate:  Some carrot, nicely lined up.  Then apple, then hotdog, noodles, mint and lettuce.  Please note:  hot dog does not go well with peanut sauce.

For me:  carrot, mint, noodles, scallions, lettuce and then pineapple (it's pretty moist and would cause the wrappers to rip).

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