appetizer/snack main dish vegetarian or vegan

steamed spring rolls

Are you ready for something lighter after the feast that may or may not have occurred over Thanksgiving?

Maybe something that’s light, crisp and a little spicy?


Or… maybe you decided to plan a party and need something more to serve than pigs in a blanket?

I have a solution. But first let’s chat…

I have been at a loss for writing and words recently. Even right now, I am at a loss for clever and witty remarks, and my cheesy jokes have been gone like stale crackers on New Years Day…

I suppose my mind has not been in the food realm, because I recently started a venture contributing writing for my church’s children’s ministry program. So… my creative juices have been basting a different sort of bird recently. Instead of dreaming up spring roll fillings and cupcake flavors, I have been dreaming up creative ways to lead little minds. I have been thinking more like an 8 year old and I have officially regressed 30 years.

Sort of.

I can still drive and pay bills.

But I can also eat cookie dough for breakfast. ( not that I have done that recently….)

I am in the process of balancing my two “lives” which really aren’t separate at all. I’m transparent here as well as there- but sometimes I’d rather not cook and I just want to grab my notebook and brain storm tornado.

Because eternity matters.

Something to think about… or chew on. 😉

Back to spring rolls:

This was my first attempt at these and with no formal training in any sort of noodle wrapping, here are my “American girl attempting Asian food” tips I learned in the process:

These are really simple to make, not to mention crazy cheap because you can use whatever fillings you have on hand, for instance:

  • shredded cabbage,carrots, bean thread noodles, red peppers
  • cooked turkey or chicken, bok choy, scallions, bean sprouts
  • shrimp, cabbage, bean sprouts, cilantro
  • carrots, peppers, bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, baby corn

Basically, any food combinations you like… but aim for texture and flavor because the rolls themselves are bland. And, color works wonders, because they are slightly transparent. Like little food cocoons. Yum.

For seasoning, I go for the classic Asian flavors of sesame, ginger, miso, onoin, garlic and hot pepper/mustard

The filling can either be raw or cooked, depending on what you’re using. I lightly sauteed my cabbage, just enough to wilt it, but left it slightly crisp. The wrappers are edible after simple soaking (don’t soak more than 15-20 seconds) and steaming is only necessary if you want to serve them warm. ( I like them cold)

If you decide to steam them, try to use a bamboo steamer, like this:

_DSC0045I scored this one at a thrift shop for less than $3.

That’s how I get most of my stuff. Except underwear, personal hygiene products, and pillows.

Because there are certain things you just don’t want “pre-owned”.

If you decide to steam them, a few tips: don’t steam for more than 3-4 minutes. Don’t allow the rolls to touch each other, and place a thin layer of neutral cooking oil to prevent sticking. And whatever you do, don’t over fill these babies. They will look ugly. You want pretty rolls, right?





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