At first glance, these may seem a bit tough to make but once you destroy the first one (it happens to me too) it gets better.
Spring rolls are essentially a bunch of raw vegetables, noodles, and sometimes meat and sauces rolled up in a flexible rice wrapper. They are chewy and crunchy, not to mention flavorful, and are a great way to eat healthy and on a budget.
These are fantastic for lunches (make them the night before or the day of) and keep well wrapped in plastic wrap. They can be filled with all kinds of vegetables, sprouts, and chicken if you like and are best paired with either a tangy peanut sauce or soy sauce. Besides being pretty healthy, they’re very pretty, a lunch item that you’ll look forward to eating!
Recipe 20: Chicken and Vegetable Spring Rolls
Note: The rice wraps can be found in grocery stores or Asian markets. They are hard, flat discs (see pictures) about the size of a standard tortilla that soften when placed in water for 30 seconds.
- Rice wraps, however many you’d like to make. Each wrap makes one roll.
- Bean or vegetable sprouts
- Chicken, cooked with a little soy sauce and chopped.
- Carrot, shredded or fine julienne.
- Rice noodles (optional)
- Chopped nuts (optional)
Gather your ingredients around your station and lay out two paper towels and spray with a spray bottle. You could also run them quickly under a tap, but you don’t want them sopping wet, just damp. Dip a rice wrapper into a large bowl of water so that it is completely submerged and hold it under until it just begins to soften completely. As soon as it feels like there’s no hard spots left, carefully pull it out and flop it onto your paper towels. Lift the edges to remove and folds and try to carefully spread it out as best as possible.
Add your chicken, cilantro, carrot, and sprouts (along with any other vegetables, nuts, sauces, or noodles you’d like) and then fold in the edges on the left and right side. Take the bottom flap and fold it over the filling, rolling it up like a burrito. Work quickly as the wrap gets sticky and could tear if in the presence of water for too long. If you’re going to make a lot, you can put it on a plate while you make the rest. If you work quickly enough, they’ll be easy to pull apart as long as no more water gets on them (keep them away from drips near the water bowl).
Wrap individually with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge, or eat fresh with peanut sauce or soy sauce! Get creative with your fillings, there’s really no limit on what flavors you could incorporate.