Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Chili Garlic Tempeh Spring Rolls

I was in the grocery store the other day and happened to wander by the one place I never go: the deli counter. To my delight I discovered that they have many Asian products for sale in a variety of small displays: a sushi section, an Indian section, etc. When I saw that they had rice paper I knew I had to make spring rolls. I was really pumped today when I pulled them out of the cupboard until I realized I had no idea what goes into a spring roll! So I jumped online to find out. Rice vermicelli. Uh oh. I had none. Ditto on the bean sprouts and cucumber (didn't I just go shopping?). And I certainly wasn't going to put shrimp or chicken in them. So I rifled through the crisper and came up with these. They were awesome, even if they weren't authentic.

Makes 6 spring rolls
- 1/2 pkg tempeh
- 4 cups water
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- few drops sesame oil

- 1 tbsp canola oil
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1-2 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp chili garlic sauce

- 6 pieces rice paper
- 6 stalks asparagus
- 4 romaine lettuce leaves
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 4 green onions, thinly sliced

1. Bring water, soy sauce, and sesame oil to a boil in a medium saucepan. Put tempeh in water and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from water and cool. When cool, coarsely grate.
2. Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add tempeh and fry for 3-4 mins, until tempeh browns a little. Add soy sauce and water and mix well (add more water if soy sauce is not evenly mixing through the tempeh). Then stir in chili garlic sauce and remove from heat to cool.
3. While tempeh is cooling, steam asparagus until tender. Roll up all four romaine leaves together and thinly slice. Chop cilantro and slice onions.
4. To assemble the spring rolls, soak a piece of rice paper in water for about a minute. Put 1/6 of the tempeh in row in the middle of the paper. Halve an asparagus stalk and flank the tempeh with the two pieces. Top with 1/6 of the lettuce, cilantro, and green onion. Fold in sides, then roll up, being careful not to rip the rice paper.
5. Serve right away with chili dipping sauce.