Hellohellohello! Today I am starting a new series on this blog. It’s called slow food. Nothing new, I know. But it’s kinda new to me, since with a busy schedule and always a billion projects on my hand I enjoy and prefer cooking dishes that don’t need more than 20 minutes of preparation. So despite the fact that I try to use organic ingredients on a regular basis, I came to the conclusion that cooking can be more conscious than just that. In fact, it can become quite meditative and calming if you e.g. separate the lentils by yourself and don’t let the pigeons do the hard work. ;-)
So spring rolls. I love them, and I always wanted to make them by myself. And so I did. You may consider spring rolls as a fast food since you can get those pretty fast in almost every Asian bistro. You may also consider them a fast food because they usually contain lots of sugar and fat.
Not mine. ;-) They take a long time and are filled with the freshest veggies from my weekly organic cradle. Plus, they can be dipped into a homemade sweet and sour sauce. For the wrapping, I used wonton paper, which is made out of wheat flour, but you can also use rice paper (like it’s done the original way and perfect for those of you with a gluten intolerance). Just make sure that the paper isn’t frozen anymore.
And here is my how-to…
HOMEMADE SPRING ROLLS AND SWEET & SOUR SAUCE
You will need – for 30 rolls:
30 pieces of wonton paper
1 medium size zucchini
1 medium size carrot
1 small red pepper
some lettuce leaves of your choice
some cilantro leaves
250 ml sesame oil
You will need – for the sweet & sour sauce:
50 ml sushi vinegar
50 ml sesame oil
1 teaspoon tomato paste
2 teaspoons brown/raw sugar
some salt, pepper and chili powder to taste
And here is how to make it – in 60 minutes:
Wash the veggies. Peel the carrot if necessary. Cut the zucchini, carrot, and red pepper in short and thin strips. I used a Julienne peeler to make sure I get even pieces, but, of course, it’s the more slow food cooking if you cut it all by hand. ;-) Then cut the lettuce leaves also in small strips.
Use 1 wonton paper piece for each roll. The size of rice paper may be different. Then it’s up to you how big or small you want your rolls.
Put some strips of carrots, zucchini, and lettuce in the middle of your paper. Add cilantro if you and your guests like it. Just leave some space on the edges so you can fix your roll there. Sprinkle some water with a little pastry brush or spoon on those edges, it will help fixing your roll.
And then roll, roll, roll…
This is the most relaxing part of making spring rolls, so take your time and be careful, you want every piece of those vegetables inside of each roll. Otherwise, it would burn really fast or the roll could even fall apart. Since every roll is made the same way you don’t need to think about how to make it the whole time. Instead, listen to some music while creating all those little rolls or share this work with your guests and have a chat meanwhile.
Then put the sesame oil into a tall pot and heat it. Use a wooden spoon to figure out the right time and temperature for frying the rolls. Put the end of the wooden spoon into the hot oil. When it creates bubbles, carefully add a few spring rolls while using a skimmer. It depends on the size of your pot how many will fit in there. But make sure, the spring rolls don’t overlap and have enough space to fry from each side. For the first round, I suggest to obey the frying so you can flip them if necessary and see when they are done. You would want them not too bright and not too dark. ;-) When they have the for your taste perfect color, take them out and put them on some kitchen paper. Then add the next round. You might want to adjust the temperature of your oven to make sure they don’t burn.
While the spring rolls chill on paper, mix the sauce. Therefore, just put all the ingredients into a mixing cup. Or blender. Mix it well and taste it.
Don’t forget your other frying rolls in the meantime! ;-)
Once the spring rolls are all fried, arrange them on a plate and garnish them with anything you like.
With their combination of raw veggies, a warm crispy wrapping, and a sweet, sour, and spicy sauce, spring rolls are also a perfect Ayurvedic snack. They serve as a great finger food for the garden party season, and I am sure your little ones will love them too!
PS: Btw… Happy International Children’s Day!