Every month myself and a few girls from work make it a point to get together and catch up outside of the office. We choose to either meet at someone’s house, or catch a happy hour. This month, I am the hostess, and I am so excited. I felt a little more pressure than usual to make something to “impress”, all the while keeping it healthy (as we all know that bikini season is in full swing). I chose one of my absolute favorites… although I must confess this is the first time I have made them. I know I am keeping you in suspense… “What did she make?” SPRING ROLLS!!!
Here’s a look at the step by step adventure:
Step 1: Julienne your veggies also known as the matchstick method. In restaurants the veggies always look so perfect and even sliced. I am secretly hoping that they have a contraption that achieves such perfection because while my knife skills did the trick, they were far from perfect!
The carrots were awfully difficult to julienne, and my stomach was growling so for the rest of the carrots I opted to use a peeler for a Me-Style Julienne… pretty innovative if you ask me!
Don’t forget the cucumbers! These were much easier to work with, and I left a little bit of the skin on so the cucumbers would maintain their firm texture.
Step 2: Soak the noodles in hot water for about 10 minutes (no cooking necessary!)– you can use whatever noodles suit your fancy cellophane, clear, rice– I opted for Rice Sticks
Step 3: While the noodles finished up I butterflied about 2 dozen medium sized shrimp. I bought shrimp that was pre-cooked, deveined and cleaned, it makes the process much easier
Step 4: I was originally going to slice fresh avocado — but changed my mind at the last minute to chopped fresh romaine instead. I was concerned about the avocado browning before tomorrow and thought romaine would be a nice substitute. For a little twist I may add a fresh avocado slices over the spring rolls right before serving.
Step 5: Chop cilantro– there is no such thing as too much
Step 6: Prepare the wrappers by placing one in a shallow dish filled with hot water– allow the wrapper to soak for about 12 to 20 seconds. BE GENTLE when removing
Step 7: Remove the wrapper from the bath, and lay it on a smooth dry surface. Begin to create a small pile of your fillings an inch or two from the bottom of the wrapper. Resist the urge to overload as a little will go a long way!
Step 8: Fold in each side of the wrapper so that the fillings are partially covered
Step 9: Roll the bottom of the wrapper up and onto the fillings– creating a little “pocket”
Step 10: Gently roll all the “pocket” all the way to the top of the wrapper– making sure all the the fillings stay in place. It is hard to get a tight roll at first but keep trying and they will get better with each attempt!
Many restaurants (or my mom’s house) often serve Spring Rolls with a peanut or hoisin sauce. My preference is Mae Ploy’s Sweet Chili Sauce!
The great thing about Spring Rolls is that you can so easily make them your own by incorporating some of your favorites i.e. avocados, peppers, basil, asparagus, chicken, tofu. Whatever your heart desires, get to wrapping!