Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Vegetarian Thai Spring Rolls with Hoisin Peanut Sauce

Spring is a great time of year to see fresh vegetables and greens
starting to show up at your local markets and gardens.

What better way to feature the color, texture, flavor of these 
beautiful vegetables wrapped in a translucent rice wrapper 
and served with a spicy hoisin peanut sauce. Just yum!

Vegetarian Thai Spring Rolls with Hoisin Peanut Sauce
Chef Tony Pisconeri


 Hoisin Peanut Sauce:
    ½ cup hoisin sauce (gluten-free if preferred)
    2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
    2 tablespoons water
    1 tablespoon rice vinegar or white vinegar
    1 tablespoon Siracha sauce
    Crushed roasted peanuts for garnish

Spring Rolls:
    2 oz dried rice sticks or rice vermicelli
    1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
    1 package 12-in (30 cm) round rice paper wrappers
    * 1 cup fresh bean sprouts, ends trimmed (any type of sprouts can be used)
    * 1 cup shredded garden greens
    * 1 cup carrots or radishes, cut into matchsticks
   * 1 cup garden cucumber, seeded and julienned
   *  4 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
    * 4 tablespoons fresh basil leaves
    * 8 large or 16 small red leaf lettuce leaves, cut in half lengthwise
* In season locally grown and sourced when possible


Make the sauce: Bring the hoisin sauce, peanut butter, water vinegar and Siracha to a boil in a saucepan over moderately high heat. Immediately remove the saucepan from the heat. Transfer to a small serving bowl. Garnish the sauce with crushed peanuts. Set aside.

Place the rice sticks in a large bowl. Pour enough hot water over to cover. Let stand until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain and rinse with cool water. Toss with the sesame oil.

Fill a large, flat bowl with warm water, making sure it is large enough to fit the rice paper wrappers. Lay a clean towel on the workspace in front of you. Carefully dip a rice paper wrapper into the water, just to get it wet all over, trying not to crack it. It will still be slightly hard. Remove it from the water and lay it onto a damp paper towel, where it will continue to soften.

Layer a small amount of each of the ingredients on the bottom 1/3 of the wrap. Start with a lettuce leaf, then about 1 tablespoon of bean sprouts, then some noodles, followed by some pieces of carrot and cucumber and then top with 2 leaves of the basil and 2 leaves of the mint. Fold up the bottom 1/3, fold in the sides and roll up the rest of the length to make an egg roll shape. Set aside and continue with the rest of the ingredients until all the rice paper wrappers are used. Cut rolls in half on a diagonal. 

Serve with hoisin peanut dipping sauce.

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