Have you ever had a moment when you are so fixated on one thing that nothing can get in your way? So much so that concentrating on anything else is out of the question? Currently my “it” thing is Vietnamese Spring Rolls. No, not the deep fried ones that claim to be one in the same; I’m talking about yummy, fresh ingredients packed into translucent rice paper and served alongside a delish dipping sauce. It’s the perfect Spring and Summer food because it’s light and healthy – something I definitely need right now as the Arizona temperatures are tiptoeing awfully close to 100 degrees and eating heavy foods would make me feel “bleh.”
Because I’m loving Spring Rolls so much, I made them this weekend for my housewarming. Big mistake! I now have an even bigger itch for more. Way to feed the craving right? Being the food nerd that I am, I googled Spring Rolls online to see if there were places close by for me to stop in to pick up some already prepared ones. Unfortunately, the location closest to home happens to run out of Spring Rolls by 2 p.m. every day. That’s not good since I work during the day and these rolled guys don’t sit well for long (the wrappers can dry out in the refrigerator or tear if left too long at room temperature). Darn! Too bad there are no food trucks that specialize in Spring Rolls. I can just imagine it now…*cueing dreamy haze* different types of Spring Rolls served alongside flavorful dipping sauces and a variety of chilled boba (bubble) teas available at the quirky food truck that magically appears outside my home or place of work every day when my tummy grumbles. A girl can dream. I wish I had the guts to open up one of these trucks; the concept would be an instant success. Maybe something to consider?
Anyways, as I salivate over the idea, I figured why not try making my own variety of Spring Rolls. Just in case you hadn’t had the pleasure of trying one for yourself, a very common type to purchase includes shrimp, rice noodle, romaine lettuce, cilantro, mint and cucumber all rolled mini-burrito-style using rice paper. I personally like to add two cut quarters of a boiled egg – yum! Now as I brainstorm aloud, these are the ones I came up with that could be dynamite:
Wasabi Salmon – Steamed salmon with green onions, lettuce, rice noodle, sesame seeds, ginger and wasabi aioli.
Crab “Salad” – Crab meat with lemon juice, mint, avocado, lettuce and rice noodles.
The Vegetarian – Sliced tofu with ginger, soy sauce, green onions, lime juice, lettuce, cucumber and julienne carrots.
Sesame Beef – Grilled thin slices of beef with sesame seeds, rice noodle, romaine lettuce, cilantro and cucumber.
Nutty Chicken – Roasted chicken with peanuts, lettuce, rice noodles, mint, bean sprouts and pickled daikon radish and carrots.
Do I dare dream up a dessert one? Maybe. Do you have any ideas for a good Spring Roll flavor? If so, I’d love to hear it.