Monday, April 27, 2009

Spring Rolls and Lychee Martinis

I've been racking my brain for something delicious and light to match the SPRING weather that I can enjoy for lunches this week. Duh, the perfect thing actually has SPRING in its title...Spring Rolls! I hit up United Noodle after my evening walk for some spring roll wrappers and other ingredients. Spring rolls are actually very simple to make if you have patience and a little time.

To soften the wrappers, I heated some water in my teapot and poured it on a cookie sheet and put one wrapper at a time in the hot water. I have found that I need to double-wrap my spring rolls to avoid ripping the delicate skin and all the yummy filling falling out. Take your two softened wrappers and lay on a cutting board. Layer with your choice of filling! I used butter lettuce, sauteed shiitake mushrooms, bean sprouts, carrots, cucumber, scallions, cilantro, and basil.

A real cook would have whipped up a fancy dipping sauce as well, but I had 2 sauces in the fridge that I used - one was a spicy peanut sauce, and the other was sweet chili sauce. This will come as no surprise to anyone who has looked in my fridge - it's 85% condiments. Regardless, both were really good with the spring rolls. I also enjoyed my spring rolls with some steamed and salted shelled edamame.

For refreshment with my spring rolls, nothing beats a lychee martini. After countless glasses of these in NYC with Katie, Cass, and Ben, I'm hooked! A can of lychees in syrup is only about $2 at United Noodle, so this is a very simple and cheap cocktail!

Spring Rolls
Spring roll wrappers
mushrooms, tofu, or other protein filling
veggies such as lettuce, carrots, cucumber, scallions, bean sprouts
herbs such as basil, cilantro, mint
cellophane noodles

Soften wrappers in warm water, layer other ingredients, roll like a burrito. Serve with a sweet chili sauce or peanut sauce.
Can be made in advance!

Lychee Martini
1 part juice from can of lychees in syrup
3 parts icy cold vodka

Shake juice and vodka with ice. Serve in martini glass with lychee for garnish.

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