I clearly remember the first time I ever had a Salad Roll - It was on one of my first dates with Nick, in a little Thai place where he selected them from the array of appetizers. You could say it was love at first bite. I particularly enjoyed the little bowl of sauce they served with them.
So I went home and tried to recreate this dish and have been making them ever since.
The sauce is really good served with many types of Asian inspired foods, like fried tofu, dumplings, egg rolls, spring rolls, salad rolls and even sushi. I've tried this with and without garlic but, although I love garlic, I find I prefer this particular sauce without it. But, of course, add some if you'd like. I'll put the recipe for the sauce at the end of the post.
The Salad Rolls are fun and fast to make. You use Rice Paper Wraps, lettuce and any salad ingredients you'd like. This time I used a combo of carrots, mushrooms, green onions. And if I'd had some snow peas or beansprouts I'd have added those too. You can also include cooked shrimp or meat too.
Basically, you cut your vegetables (except the lettuce) and cooked meat if using, into thin strips or slices. Lightly steam any hard vegetables like I did with the carrots (1 1/2 minutes in the microwave oven with a bit of water in the bowl) and sauté the mushrooms in a little hot olive oil ... don't add salt as that will draw moisture out of the mushrooms and make them too wet for tidy salad roll eating. I leave the green onions raw but use them sparingly.
Then with all your ingredients arranged nearby, soak the rice paper in a plate of water, one sheet at a time, until soft and pliable, about 20 seconds. Lay the sheet onto your working surface and put a lettuce leaf on one half, as shown. Add your other veggies, and roll as tightly as you can, without tearing the rice wrapper. Note that the rice paper will stick to itself, and that is how the rolls are sealed, so leave a little room when you lay down your lettuce, for some overlap at the edge.
Place on a platter until ready to serve, but make sure there's a little gap between each or they'll stick to one another.
These make a good appetizer or a light lunch, although if you're not adding meat, you might want something more on the side to fill you up.
We actually had the sauce twice this month. Here it is served with Nick's Baked Spring Rolls.
↑ The same sauce with baked spring rolls. ↑
Thanks for taking a look and have a great weekend.
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