It may be snowing here in Colorado Springs (I am fully aware it is April 15th — our mother nature never gets the message), but I’ve had summer rolls on the brain since last night’s re-run of Iron Chef. Feathery soft strips of rice paper wrapped around crunchy veggies with peanut sauce. Problem is, I only sort of had the ingredients on hand for this version, so I improvised and came up with an addictive variation made with arugula, avocado, shredded carrot and jicama topped with tahini dressing.
For a little extra pizzazz – I dipped them into a sauce of tamari, rice wine vinegar and sriracha. Shred the veggies on a box grater, and if you shred too much – toss them into My Favorite Salad tomorrow.
- Rice paper wrappers
- half or full avocado, sliced
- 1 cup shredded carrot
- 1 cup shredded jicama
- Baby arugula – washed (I’m not too proud to say I used the organic spinach and arugula mix from Walmart)
- Tahnini dressing
- Approximately 2 tablespoons tamari (wheat-free soy sauce)
- Approximately 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- A generous squirt of sriracha
Fill a shallow dish with warm tap water and soak one rice paper wrapper for 1 minute or so – until it is soft and pliable. Soak it too long and you’ll know – it’ll virtually fold in on itself and be unusable. Lay the soaked wrapper on a cutting board and top with several leaves of arugula – maybe ¼ cup. Drizzle 1-2 tablespoons of dressing on top and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon each of carrot and jicama and a slice or two of avocado. Roll up by folding in the sides of the wrapper and gently roll like a burrito. The rice paper sticks to itself to make a neat little package. Continue to make as many as you desire. The recipe, as written creates approximately 8-10. Make more than you think you need, like I said – they are addictive.
Stir together the dipping sauce ingredients. The sauce is bonus – feel free to change the ratios to make the flavor appeal to your palate. Double or triple depending on how many wrappers you end up making.
Experiment for yourself. Fresh cilantro (forgot I had some until sealing the last one) adds zing, but so would a classic summer roll herbs such as mint and basil. Lightly steamed asparagus or spinach leaves would also make a tasty addition.
A meal like this is wholly satisfying and a treat for your tasty buds. It feels fancy, but is really a cinch to make. The rolls are low in calories and super high in nutrients; you actually feel cleaner after eating them.