Egg Rolls

As much as I wanted to throw down some Mexican recipes on Cinco de Mayo, I could not. My fridge had some tasty leftovers, and furthermore my wife and I had a night out on the town. As Cinco de Mayo passed, my craving for Mexican food (carne de asada, or tinga) turned into the flavors of Asia.

The night out was a great dinner at The Cheesecake Factory, of which I tried the Spicy Crispy Beef, and loved every bite. So on Seis de Mayo, I thought I would make egg rolls, spicy crispy beef, and a take on P.F. Chang’s garlic noodles.

My wife and I love egg rolls. Being part Filipino, she grew up on lumpia shanghai which are basically egg rolls with pork mixture, potato, shrimp, and green beans. These are very tasty, however I wanted to throw my own take on the lumpia.

I began with grinding up my pork butt. I believe the butt was nearly six pounds, of which yielded roughly seventy egg rolls.I use the food grinder which attaches to my Kitchen Aid. I spray the inside of the attachments with Pam cooking spray which makes things come out easier. Once I have the pork mixture, I season with lots of fresh ground pepper, salt, garlic powder, oyster sauce, and fish sauce. I then set this aside and let marinade before mixing in the other ingredients.

  • Six carrots, grated
  • One large onion, thinly sliced
  • Thin vermicelli noodles, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes (3 packets)
  • 2 large baking potatoes, skinned, cubed, and cooked for 25 minutes, drain, and let cool

Once the meat is done marinating, mix in the above ingredients. Add more seasoning if you prefer.

Depending on how many egg rolls you will be wrapping, you will use 1-2 eggs and 1 TB of cornstarch for the sealant on your egg roll wrapper. Pay caution with what type of wrapper you use. I typically purchase the wrappers not are not thick, and are commonly found in the frozen section of your local asian mart.

Egg Roll MixLay the egg roll wrapper with one of the four corners facing you. Generously (depending on how big you want the egg roll) spoon in the mixture and roll over the wrapper and begin to roll, once or twice over. Then brush on the egg mixture, fold in the edges, and finalize the wrap.

Egg Roll MixWhile wrapping, heat a pot of canola oil on medium heat. Once the oil nears 375 degrees, drop an egg roll one at a time into the oil and fry until golden brown. Let cool for a few minutes then eat with your favorite dipping sauce. My recommendations for sauces are the following:

  • Spicy
    • three chopped thai peppers
    • chopped garlic
    • 4TB sugar
    • Juice of 1 lime
    • Fish Sauce
  • Traditional Filipino
    • White Vinegar
    • chopped garlic
    • fresh ground pepper

Asparagus and Goat Cheese Tart

Asparagus and Goat Cheese TartI tried making a simple appetizer for my family and guests a while back. The recipe looked easy enough and yummy at the same time. It included puff pastry dough, goat cheese, pancetta (or bacon), and asparagus. The only time consuming part was cooking the pancetta, and waiting for the appetizer to bake. 🙂 Be careful not to overcook the tart as the edges tend to burn. Keep an eye on it at all times. Overall, a great appetizer to serve.

  • 5 slices bacon or 1/4 lb of pancetta
  • 1 bunch thin to medium-sized aspargus, tough ends removed, then cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 lb. soft goat cheese
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, defrosted
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg yolk mixed with 1/4 tb water

Preheat the oven to 375F. Cook the bacon or pancetta until crisp, then remove onto paper towel. Once cooled, crumble. Drain all but 1TB of the bacon fat. Cook the shallots in the bacon fat until tender, then add the asparagus pieces. Cook the mixture for 5-7 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat, and add the crumbled bacon or pancetta. Carefully pat the goat cheese onto the puffy pastry dough. Sprinkle the asparagus, shallot, and bacon mixture on top of the goat cheese. Brush the border of the pastry with the egg wash. Cook in the oven for about 25-30 minutes. Let cool and cut into four squares.