Sunday, January 29, 2012

{kitchen adventures} Egg Rolls!

So, we seriously love our Asian food up in this house, but we're not too crazy about the extra sodium, MSG, and fat that's found in most takeout. I love to make mine from scratch, and these egg rolls are probably my favorite kitchen creation. They're very filling (1 or 2 can make a meal), leaner than takeout, and we can easily feed 4-5 people for around 8 bucks. The only thing my family loves more than Asian food is stretching our money a little bit further, so you can imagine that these are a big hit.

I love to make this meal for get-togethers, and after being asked dozens of times for the recipe, I figured I should just post it here.

Homemade Egg Rolls

What you'll need: 

Bagged "coleslaw mix" salad (shredded red/green cabbage and carrots)
Fresh mung bean sprouts
Green onions
Tofu or some type of cooked meat, poultry, or seafood, leftovers are great (I often use chicken breast.)
One package (about 12) egg roll wrappers
2 eggs
Dried ginger
Oil for frying

This recipe is so flexible. You can add or remove any kind of vegetables you like for the filling. Shiitake mushrooms also make a great addition, or a substitute for meat. To save money, a half head of cabbage can be used in place of the pre-cut coleslaw mix.

 Cut the meat or tofu and onions into bite-size pieces and toss into a large mixing bowl.

Repeat with the cabbage.

Cut the bean sprouts more coarsely, leaving each sprout in halves or thirds, and add to the bowl.

Add two eggs and mix.

 Sprinkle on ginger, until you can just start to smell it (about 2-3tsp). Mix.

 Pour about one inch of oil into a tall pot and heat to 345 degrees farenheit. If you don't have a thermometer, medium-high is a good place to start.

While the oil is heating, wrap your egg rolls. Put the wrap so that it makes a diamond shape and fill just below the center of the wrap. You want enough filling to make them full, but they will break if you overfill them. I use 3-4 heaping spoonfuls, about 1/4-1/3 cup. Instructions for wrapping are also usually on the package.

Grab a small bowl of water to wet your fingertips. Use them to moisten the entire outside edge of the wrap.

 Fold your left and right corners in first.

Then fold the bottom edge.

Starting at the bottom, roll the wrap tightly up, moistening the top corner once more.

You should now have something resembling this:

 Once wrapped, use tongs to place each egg roll into the oil. 
Tip: If you don't use a thermometer, test the oil by dropping in a tiny piece of an egg roll wrapper. If it bubbles up, it's ready; just make sure it doesn't burn immediately.

After about one or two minutes, the bottoms should be browned. Flip each roll when this happens.

Cook an additional 1-2 minutes, until bottoms are browned and cool upright over paper towels.

Serve with rice and sauce for dipping. This one is to-die-for. Cook them for someone special and prepare to be in their good graces!

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