Shrimp + Shiitake Spring Rolls

The more I make things stuffed with things, the more I want them to be a one-stop shop with no oils or dips or what have you to have to fuss about with. I just want each bite to be its own little flavour bomb and I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

These spring rolls are basically that.

I can’t think of a single dip that would make them better than they already are, except maybe a very light honey + rice wine kind of thing that might brighten up an otherwise rather earthy flavour profile.

This recipe makes 8 spring rolls and scales perfectly for greater quantities.

What you need:

  • 1-2 tbsp oil for frying
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 1 cup of cabbage or kale, finely chopped
  • 170 g (about 1 cup) of raw shrimp, peeled and chopped
  • 3 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp sake
  • 1 tsp soya sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • Pinch of white pepper
  • 9 8″ x 8″ spring roll wrappers (I use this kind)
  • Oil for deep frying
  • 1 tbsp corn starch mixed with 2 tbsp water (roll glue)

What you do:

  1. In a frying pan or wok, heat the oil over medium-high heat, then add the ginger and garlic, stirring constantly until fragrant.
  2. Add the cabbage or kale and stir fry until wilted.
  3. Add the shrimp and the scallions and stir fry until the shrimp are just opaque.
  4. Kill the heat and add the sake, the soya sauce, the fish sauce, the sesame oil and the white pepper and stir until everything is coated.
  5. Set the wok contents aside to cool.
  6. Once the filling has cooled, begin filling your spring rolls. Lay a wrapper (or all of the wrappers, should you have that kind of space) out with a point facing you so it looks like a diamond. Drop about 2 tablespoons of the filling onto a wrapper and use the back of a spoon to even it out. Fold the corner facing you over the filling, then roll the wrapper over the filling once. Fold the sides in over the roll, then brush the corn starch and water mixture over the remaining, unrolled surface. Roll the rest of the way, tightening as you go, until you have a nice, cigar-like spring roll. Repeat with the remaining filling and seven of the wrappers.
  7. In a medium sauce pan, add enough oil to make it approximately three inches deep, and heat over high heat (8 on my burners is perfect – they go up to 10).
  8. Test the oil with strips of the remaining (sacrificial) wrapper. When the oil is ready, the wrapper strips will immediately float to the top and get golden brown in about 30 seconds.
  9. Fry the spring rolls in small batches, taking care to not overcrowd the pan and ensuring that they get golden brown all over.
  10. Remove the fried spring rolls to a baking rack until ready to eat.

I consider spring rolls to be fiddly foods, so I like to make a bunch at a time and toss some in the freezer for future me to enjoy. To reheat, I just toss them on a baking sheet in a 425 oven for about 15 minutes (flipping halfway through) OR I defrost and nuke them for one minute on medium, then toss them under the broiler for about 5 minutes (flipping halfway through) until nice and crisp.

 

 

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