Since we’ve been back to the States I have been seriously missing all the amazing food we ate on vacation. In the three weeks we’ve been back, I’ve ordered Thai food from our favorite neighborhood spot at least three times. Between ordering Asian food, I’ve decided I need to try my hand at making a few things so I stop making a run to Land every few days. I decided the easiest place to start would be the spring roll. It requires no cooking, about 10 minutes, and can be made with whatever’s laying around the fridge. Sounds pretty perfect, right?
I was inspired after I found myself in the “specialty” section of the local grocer when I was looking for coconut milk. (Really? Coconut milk is a specialty item?) I stumbled across rice paper wrappers and I knew I had to try my hand at spring rolls. I had zucchini, yellow squash, basil and pea shoots – all of which I thought would go perfectly together for a fresh and healthy lunch.
One of my favorite things about summer is the farmer’s market where we can get super fresh and super tasty vegetables. There’s something about farmer’s market veggies that have so much flavor. Why bother with turning on the stove and doing anything with them?
I started by using a vegetable peeler on the zucchini and squash to make them as thin as I could get them. It makes the rolling process much easier, and even leaves the veggies with a little crunch which really helps make the rolls. With some spinach and pea shoots to add to the texture and some basil leaves for even more flavor, these spring rolls were surprisingly delicious and super easy to make.
The hardest part was just making sure the rice paper stayed together – it’s a delicate dance. Getting the wrapper wet enough to be pliable but not stretching it too far that the pea shoots start to poke through. As long as you take your time and roll it like a burrito, you should be good. A little practice and a bit of trial and error (two out of my five were torn) and it will eventually come together. The key I found is to not pack them quite as full as you’d like.
They were, of course, great to eat immediately, but also managed to hold together well enough to be packed for lunch again the next day. I’ve got quite a few wrappers left, so I definitely see more spring rolls in my future. They’re so easy and delicious how could I not want to make them all the time?
Zucchini Basil Spring Rolls
What You’ll Need:
- 1 cup thinly sliced yellow squash
- 1 cup thinly sliced zucchini
- 1/2 cup fresh basil
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 cup pea shoots
- 2 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon minced onion
What You’ll Do:
- Starting with one roll at a time, wet the wrapper so it is pliable but not too sticky.
- Place the squash and zucchini in the first quarter of the wrapper, top with spinach, basil, and pea shoots.
- Fold the side closest to you over and start rolling until the middle of the wrapper.
- Fold in the sides, like a burrito, and continue to roll the rest of the way and use a bit of water on your finger to seal the end.
- Repeat with the remainder of the vegetables, it should make 5 rolls in total.
- Whisk the sesame oil, soy sauce, and spices together. Slice the spring rolls and dip in sauce. Enjoy!