Friday, January 16, 2009
Here's something that I never get tired of...Spring Rolls! They're so easy to make and you can eat them without feeling fat. How awesome is that?! I'd say that's pretty darn amazing. I made two types of spring rolls, one is called Goi Cuon, and the other is called Bo Bia. For some reason I hated eating these until I was about...18. WHAT A SHAME!!! I KNOW!!! Don't feel bad for me though, my brother can even eat one of these yet because all the veggies aren't cooked. Now go harass him on his blog and tell him what he's missing out on!
Anyway, a Goi Cuon would be what most people consider a typical spring roll. To me, the only difference between a Goi Cuon and a Bo Bia is the use of shrimp and pork vs chinese sausage, dried shrimp, and jicama. Both are equally delicious!
Here's the ingredient list:
Goi Cuon (typical spring roll)
- Rice Paper (roughly 6-8 inches in diameter)
- 1/2 pack of vermicelli noodles
- 1 head red leaf lettuce
- 1/2 pound pork thighs
- 1/2 pound shrimp
- 1 bundle of mint
- 1 bundle of basil
- 1 bundle of cilantro
- everything from above (minus shrimp and pork)
- 1 pack of chinese sausage
- 1 jicama
- 1/8 pound dried shrimp
- Chunky peanut butter
- Hoison sauce
So there's nothing to really worry about when making spring rolls besides having everything out in front of you. Just make sure you wash all the veggies and herbs so you don't end up eating a caterpillar. ewww. Check out what I did.
For the shrimp, you just want to cook them in water until they turn orange. I boiled the pork thigh for approximately 20 minutes (might take longer for larger pieces). Once it's cool, just slice thinly like...roast beef! except...it's pork.
If you're making Bo Bia, you can microwave the chinese sausage for 2 minutes, 1 minute on each side so it doesn't explode in your microwave (LONG STORY!) hahahaha. The dried shrimp you will want to throw in the food processor, and chop finely, not powdery. Quickly sautee the dried shrimp in a shallow pan with a little bit of olive oil and garlic just to bring out the smell/flavor. I can guarantee you that your house will smell so uhh...open some windows. Also make sure that you wear an ugly shirt that you don't really care about unless you want to smell like dried shrimp for the rest of the day. Now jicama isn't very popular in asian cuisine, but it adds a nice subtle crunch, which I actually enjoy. Shred the jicama, and then also just sautee quickly with some salt and pepper.
Lastly, you'll want to boil some vermicelli noodles. The directions on the back work perfectly fine, or you can do what I do which is boil for about 8 minutes, turn off the fire, close the lid and let it sit for another 8 minutes. Rinse with cold water afterward. In a small sauce pan, combine 4 tbs of hoison sauce, and then add 1 1/2 tbs peanut butter, and 1/4 cup of water. Cook this over low-medium heat and stir until the sauce thickens. This should take less than 5 minutes and voila, you made yourself a tasty dipping sauce. Alright! now you don't have to cook anymore!!!
I was initially making these spring rolls by myself, but my mom hated how I was stealing her kitchen so she decided to make/eat some. Dip the rice paper in hot water, but only for a couple seconds. We actually have these handy little mats that you can put the rice paper on that way it won't stick to your table! Pretty coolio! Anyhow, place your desired amount of shrimpies on the bottom layer. If you're using jumbo shrimp, you can cut them in half. Arrange a little lettuce on top of them, add some herb leaves, a little vermicelli noodles, and lastly some of your sliced pork. The trick to rolling is to apply constant pressure that way when you take a bite out of your spring roll, all the ingredients don't fall out.
I normally fold the left and right hand sides in first by an inch, and then start to roll from the bottom, up. Make sure tightly roll the spring roll and squeeze the ingredients inside the rice paper. Making Bo Bia is no different so enjoy! sounds easy right? Just make sure to use moderation with your ingredients so you don't end up with an ugly, deformed spring roll. YUM!