It’s been so hot here lately that most days when I get home from work I just want to lay around under a ceiling fan with a glass of ice water. Cue these rolls; summery, cool, light, and only require heat for cooking a chicken breast and some grains (if you make veggie rolls, then you wouldn’t have to turn on your stove at all!) I am a huge believer in the idea that healthy eating has to be a practical, sustainable lifestyle. Therefore, make the rolls however you want! Get creative with the veggies, meat, and grains – this is a great way to use whatever you have laying around the fridge or pantry. (Also, this isn’t so much a recipe as it is a starting point for healthy creativity; no specific measurements or ingredients here!) Have fun with it! I promise you won’t be disappointed!
- Rice paper sheets (I found some at our local Asian market; they’re super cheap!)
- Shredded/julienned fresh vegetables (I used carrots, cucumber, and avocado)
- Greens (I used green leaf lettuce; you could use cabbage, kale, or spinach)
- Cooked grain (I used barley; you could try brown rice, farro, or quinoa)
- Meat (I used chicken breast; you could use sliced pork chop or steak or ground beef)
- Fresh herbs (cilantro, mint, and basil are all good options!)
- Seasoning: hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, fish sauce, chili-garlic sauce…
- Marinate meat in a 1-1-1 blend of soy sauce, rice vinegar, and chili-garlic sauce for about thirty minutes.
- Wash and chop/shred all of your veggies and lay them out where they’ll be easily accessible.
- Saute meat until cooked through and set aside.
- Now you’re ready to assemble! Fill a large bowl or baking pan with warm water; this will be where you’ll soften the rice paper sheets.
- Dip a rice paper sheet into the warm water for 3-5 seconds until it is pliable but still firm (it will continue to soften as it sits).
- Lay the rice paper sheet on a cutting board and stack your roll fillings on one side (see photos)
- Using your fingers to hold the filling in place, pick up one end of the paper and tuck around filling. Fold in adjacent edges and continue rolling (see photos)
- Eat your rolls right away or wrap in plastic wrap and keep refrigerated. These make a great lunch to take to work!
What’s a summer roll without a dipping sauce? I made a blend of hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, chili-garlic sauce, and sliced green onions – it was delicious! Try this blend or maybe some sweet and sour sauce or hot mustard.