I admit it–I’ll eat anything rolled in rice paper. My all-time favorite dish is Pork and Shrimp Fresh Spring Rolls (Goi Cuon) and on its heels is this dish. I absolutely love all the different tastes and textures of these unique spring rolls: the flavorful and hearty grilled pork sausages, the refreshing lettuce and aromatic herbs, the crunchy cucumbers and the crispy egg roll wrapper is pure genius! Then there’s the slightly chewy and sticky texture of the rice paper encasing all of this goodness. Add the dipping sauce and you have sensory overload in the most mouth-watering way. Who doesn’t love this dish!
Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks
Feel free to adjust the sweetness of the dipping sauce to your taste. If you prefer a sweeter sauce, use 1/2 cup honey instead of the recommended 1/3 cup. If you’ve had this sauce in the restaurants, it’s definitely on the sweeter side.
These rolls are best when they are freshly made. The rice paper doesn’t refrigerate or reheat very well.
If you’re making these ahead to serve later, cover the rolls with a damp paper towel to keep the rice paper moist.
for the Dipping Sauce
4 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 lb lean ground pork
1/3 cup black bean soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/3 cup honey
3 Tbsp sweet vinegar (also called sushi vinegar)
3 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup coconut soda
1 Tbsp roasted rice powder
2 tsp tapioca starch
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp crushed roasted peanuts
for the Spring Rolls
4 Grilled Pork Sausages
16 egg roll wrappers (Spring Home brand, TYJ Spring Roll Pastry)
1 cup vegetable oil (for deep frying)
16 sheets rice paper (Flying Horse brand, size = 22 cm)
16 pieces green leaf lettuce, washed and trimmed
fresh herbs: mint, spicy mint, or cilantro, washed and trimmed
16 sprigs garlic chives, washed and trimmed
1 cucumber cut into 16 thin strips, approximately 5-inches long
Making the Dipping Sauce
Peel the garlic and shallots and chop.
Heat a saucepan over High heat and when hot add the vegetable oil. Add the garlic and shallots and stir-fry for 15 seconds.
Reduce heat to Medium. Add pork and cook for 6-7 minutes or until thoroughly cooked.
Add the black bean soy sauce, hoisin sauce, honey, sweet vinegar, peanut butter, coconut soda, roasted rice powder, tapioca starch and ground black pepper. Stir together and combine well. As soon as the sauce starts to bubble, turn off the heat and allow to cook for 10 minutes.
Pour sauce into a blender and process for 1 minute until smooth.
Serve the sauce warm topped with the crushed peanuts.
Yields: 3 cups
Making the Crunchy Egg Roll Wrappers
In a small bowl lightly beat the egg with a fork.
Separate the egg roll wrappers. Take one of the wrappers and lightly brush it with the egg mixture. Roll the egg roll wrapper up into a tight log. Brush a bit more of the egg wash on the edges to seal.
Deep fry the egg roll wrappers in vegetable oil for 5 minutes until golden brown. Place the rolls on a paper towel to soak up the oil and allow to cool.
Alternatively, place the egg roll wrappers on an oiled baking sheet. Spray some vegetable oil on the rolls. Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes. Rotate after 6 minutes so they brown evenly. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Yields: 16 rolls
Making the Fresh Spring Rolls
Cut each of the pork sausages in half and then cut in half lengthwise so there’s a total of 16 pieces.
Prepare a plate of fresh greens consisting of green leaf lettuce, fresh herbs, cucumber strips and garlic chives.
Fill a large bowl with warm water.
Dip a sheet of the rice paper in the water wetting it completely. Shake off the excess water and place the rice paper on your work surface. Wait for 10 seconds to allow it to soften.
Place a piece of green leaf lettuce on top of the rice paper. Place a cucumber strip and an egg roll wrapper on top of the lettuce. Wrap the lettuce around everything making a tight roll. Wrap the rice paper around the lettuce log and roll about halfway. Place a piece of the sausage next to the lettuce log. Roll again covering the sausage with the rice paper. Fold over each of the ends. Place a sprig of chive on the rice paper and then finish rolling. Continue until all rolls are made.
Serve the fresh rolls with the warm dipping sauce. Enjoy!
Yields: 16 rolls