My month of veganism might have been a little bit of a bust, but that doesn’t mean I can’t still try to add more plant-based and whole foods into my diet. Work has been a little slow for me lately, so as you do when you have some free time on your hands, you experiment with new food recipes (and take pictures of your master pieces, of course).
As spring is officially here (even though it doesn’t really feel like it in Toronto yet), I really wanted to make something fresh that would be really tasty. Combined with my love for Vietnamese food (my best friend is Vietnamese and my teenage years were spent consuming delicious meals her mom made) I decided to try my hand at fresh spring rolls!
I found the recipe below on I Love Vegan, but I made a couple of adjustments as well (cause even though this recipe is great, I’m annoying and like to tweak my food).
- ½ red pepper
- 1 large carrot
- ⅓ -½ long English cucumber
- 3 green onions
- a handful of baby spinach
- firm tofu
- rice paper
Spicy peanut dipping sauce:
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 3 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tbsp Sriracha
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp brown sugar (or maple syrup)
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- 2-3 tbsp water to thin
- Cut tofu into thin strips and coat in whatever sauce you feel would work well (I Love Vegan has a recipe for a sauce you can use too). My tofu was cubed and already cooked ahead of time, as I’m pretty lazy during the week and like to keep tofu ready and on hand for quick meals. Throw into the oven at 425° for 10 minutes (flip after 5). Once it’s done, let it cool.
- Cut your red pepper, large carrot and cucumber into long slices. I used baby carrots since I had a bag already in the fridge and wanted my wraps to be a little more bite-sized. But it all depends on what you like (if you take big bites, do you girl). Also chop up green onions and spinach (I also only added spinach to half of my wraps to vary the texture).
- Take rice paper and soak for 10 seconds in lukewarm water (the packaging will say 5 seconds, but I still find it a little stiff if you don’t leave the rice paper submerged for at least 10).
- Take wet rice paper and place on a clean surface. Place veggies and tofu to one side of the rice paper and slowly roll (kind of a like a tiny burrito). Tuck in the sides halfway through and then continue to roll.
- Once you’re done with rolling your fresh spring rolls, leave them to the side to set a little (as the rice paper will still be sticky). I also coated mine in a thin layer of sesame seeds.
- Throw all the ingredients together for the sauce. If you want a thinner sauce, you’re going to want to add much more water than the recipe recommends (mine turned out really thick). Luckily, I’m peanut butter obsessed, so I didn’t mind one bit.
And that’s it! The prep time is undoubtedly longer than the eating time, but the deliciousness is worth it. This is definitely a recipe I’m going to bust out the next time I want to impress someone with my cooking skills (especially on the days I don’t really feel like cooking).