[This recipe and blog post features the musings of The Messy Cooker’s childhood friend and frequent editor, The Trial and Error Cooker]
The Messy Cooker: What a treat! Two guest cookers in a row. It’s like a double feature movie or back-to-back episodes of Supernatural (it couldn’t get much better).
Please meet my very good friend, who I’ve known since middle school, The Trial and Error Cooker. She is one of the craftiest chefs I’ve seen. I’ve been trying to get my paws on her Thai spring roll recipe for several years now…and at last I have succeeded. Enjoy!
The Trial and Error Cooker (TRAEC): These spring rolls are sure to put a spring in your step. Maybe event to the point that you could get a grant from the government to develop your silly walk.
Before you begin this recipe, know that I change it up a bit each time based on what I have in the kitchen or what sounds just too good to resist that day. We all get random cravings and I find that it’s best to indulge them and see what happens! Mint instead of cilantro? Go for it! How about Thai basil instead? Even better! Throw in some avocado? Well, I haven’t tried that one, but avocados never let me down. Chocolate? *Slap* Get it together, mate.1
Lastly, I’ll leave you with this: for the peanut dipping sauce, don’t trust my measurements (I never do). Everything is to taste, and you’ll have the most success adding a little more of this and a little more of that until you get it just as spicy and sweet as you like it. Have fun and go nuts!
The Trial and Error Cooker
PS: Don’t sue me if the recipe doesn’t go well. Get it? Error and trial? Ok I’m done.
1Chocolate is always the answer, just probably not inside these rolls. Make something chocolatey for dessert instead! I combined the leftover peanut butter with powdered sugar and a little vanilla to make truffles that I dipped in melted chocolate. Nom.
Recipe for Thai Spring Rolls with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
Servings: this will feed 4 very hungry people
Time: 30-45 minutes, depending on your wrapping abilities
Difficulty: easy, depending on your wrapping abilities
- Round rice paper (from Asian market or just Asian foods section of Safeway)
- Mixed greens lettuce
- Shredded carrots
- Tofu (pressed and cut into rectangular strips)
- Optional (things I didn’t bother with): rice noodles, mint leaves, more fresh herbs, etc.
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 3/4 cup coconut milk (add more or less for desired thickness)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp spicy Sriracha powder (or hot sauce or chili flakes)
Note: the measuring amounts for the dipping sauce are rough guesses from memory. I just kind of added everything to taste and suggest you do the same!
- Press your tofu. All you need is a cutting board and some books! The more time you press it for, the better. Aim for at least 5 minutes if you’re super impatient…then cut it into thin rectangular strips.
- Set up your station. Get all your ingredients ready to go like an assembly line, and fill a medium-sized bowl with warm water. Make sure you have a clean flat surface to work on, like a countertop or cutting board.
- Dip a sheet of rice paper fairly quickly into the warm water, just enough to get all of it wet. Do not soak, or it will fall apart. It’s ok that it will still be a little firm when you lift it out – it’ll soak up the rest of the water while you work.
- Lay the rice paper down on your work surface and add your ingredients on the bottom part closest to you. Then roll it up like a burrito!
*Note: click here for more detailed placement and rolling instructions
- Once you’ve rolled all your spring rolls, you may cut them in half to serve, or just devour them as is.
Peanut dipping sauce
- To make the peanut sauce, just add your ingredients together in a bowl and serve!
*Pro tip: coconut milk separates when you put it in the fridge. Keep it at room temperature for this recipe and shake the can before you measure it out. If you did put your coconut milk in the fridge and it separated, then make this sauce on the stove, then let it cool down to room temperature.
Cut your spring rolls in half—diagonally! It’ll make them look super fancy schmancy.
Quick Clean Up
If you used your table to roll the spring rolls, make sure to clean it and dry it off right after using. Don’t want to go warping your wood.
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