Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Rice Paper Rolls and Soba Noodle Stir-Fry

One of the staple meals that appears in Chez Stadium is an Asian-style stir-fry. I like to chop as many vegetables as are in the vegetable drawer, saute them all up and add soy sauce or Soyaki or some other form of Asian-flavored sauce. I'll serve it over whatever starch is convenient. Usually this is instant brown rice (c'mon, real brown rice takes forever to cook!) or whole wheat spaghetti noodles. Sometimes it's quinoa. But today I had some whole wheat soba noodles from Uwajimaya, so I opted to cook those up for the stir-fry.

Usually appearing in my vegetable drawer are carrots, onions, broccoli, sweet peppers (either red or green) and zucchini. All that went into the stir-fry, plus button mushrooms and some frozen snow peas. I also had some leftover roasted sweet potato I threw in at the end.After it's all cooked, I usually grate in fresh ginger (stored already peeled in the freezer) and add Soyaki or soy sauce or some combination thereof.

Feeling ambitious, I decided to make rice paper rolls to accompany the stir-fry. I really enjoy these at Thai restaurants (especially E-San), but they are fairly easy to make at home--just a bit time-consuming to prep all the fillings. I keep it simple, going all veggie, and today I put in the following: julienned cucumbers and red peppers, grated carrots and radish, alfalfa sprouts and avocado (not pictured). Some directions call for boiling the rice paper for a few seconds, but I don't bother with that. All I do is run them under warm water for 10-15 seconds, then quickly fill as they soften. You want to make sure your toppings are all ready before you start working, since when wet, the rice paper gets really sticky.

Here's my rice paper, which I also got at Uwajimaya.

And my rice paper roll-making station:

Basically, you just run the wrapper under warm water for ~15-20 seconds, lay it flat and quickly fill with your prepped toppings. Then just roll like a burrito and seal. I served these with Trader Joe's Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce.

Aww, a poor roll has become a bit flaccid. How embarrassing.

And here is the stir-fry. Pictured on top is the chicken I cooked all day in my Crockpot. I threw various Asian ingredients in, like soy sauce, peanut butter, ginger and garlic and just let it do its thing all day. De-lish! Crockpots are delightful contraptions.

So, pets, it's not hard to make a foreign cuisine at home.


Deanne said...

Does ginger stored in the freezer taste as good as the fresh stuff? I've never thought about doing that, but I'm intrigued...

VCK said...

I haven't noticed any difference. It always works for me!