Wednesday, 2 December 2009
Mostly to prove I cook things other then desserts as well. It's been.. hot.. here. And frankly when it gets to the "omg don't touch me" hot the last thing I want to do is cook over a hot stove or oven. So the other day I decided to play around with the rice paper rolls I picked up a couple days ago!
The heat made me quite lazy so I just rustled around in the fridge and pulled out a couple of colours; cucumber, carrots and red capsicum.
Some basil and mint from the garden and a can of tuna is what I used. You could use noodles or rice too, but I didn't have any leftovers available and just couldn't raise the interest to cook some just for these. They were delicious without and just as filling, I promise.
So, first step is to fill up a bowl with warm water and soak a sheet of rice paper in it for about 30 seconds.. probably less. I discovered very quickly that you need to keep ontop of this bit because there's a magic moment when it goes from fairly stiff papery-like object to limp as a noodle and as sticky as cling-wrap in the blink of an eye; fishing a limp, clingy noodle wrap out of the bowl is quite difficult without tearing holes in it... oh dear, that doesn't sound very appetizing does it? I apologize, but you will understand if you try this out yourselves.
Anyways! Bang your rice paper down on the board and start with placing your stuffings at the bottom-most edge. Anything will do really, you probably should slice it up a bit more fine then I have but again.. it was hot, and I was lazy. The gumption just wasn't there.
Don't forget your protein! and I added some shredded mint leaves.
Then you begin to roll, working from the bottom up; I decorated halfway through with an attractive and tasty basil leaf on mine.
This is an art form that is difficult to master, and I am far from that point. But generally if you roll it up from bottom to top and then tuck in the sides, it looks good enough.
It's really tempting to just keep making these once you get going, but don't be fooled by their little packaging; these babies are quite filling.
As you can see I experimented with wrapping techniques, stuffing ratios and even adding in some of the sauce inside the roll.
I whipped up some dipping sauce to go with it, I'm pretty sure it's just soy sauce, some sushi rice vinegar and some crunchy peanut butter whisked together.
They were relatively easy and fun to make (I'm thinking this'll be another fun one to do with kids, just think of all the fun non-conventional stuffings you could make!!) and best of all; no heat (aside from warm water) was necessary for the makings.
They may not have been the prettiest summer rolls, but I am deeming them a big success; will make again for sure.. which is good, because I have TONS of rice paper left over!