Friday, May 11, 2012

Summer Rolls with Mushrooms and Brown Sugar Tofu

Summer roll season is here, people!

Time to make a trip to the Asian market and stock up on supplies.

Rice paper wraps and vermacelli noodles are a must.

This version here is packed full of goodness... brown sugar seared tofu, beech mushrooms, romaine lettuce and cilantro with a ginger shallot green onion paste. 

Savory and Sweet.

Roll. Eat. Repeat.

Summer Rolls with Mushrooms and Brown Sugar Tofu  (makes 8 fat rolls)

Slightly Adapted From 101 cookbooks

Ginger onion paste

2 scallions, sliced
2 medium shallots, peeled and chopped
3 T. grated, peeled ginger
1/2 t. sea salt
4 T. sunflower oil

Brown Sugar Tofu and Mushrooms

15 oz. tofu
4 cloves garlic    
3/4 t. sea salt
2 T. dark brown sugar
3 T. sunflower oil

8 oz. package beech mushrooms, rough chopped

Other Goodies      

spring roll wrappers (25 cm size)
vermacelli noodles (2 small bundles)
romaine lettuce, torn into pieces
fresh cilantro sprigs        

Sweet sesame dipping sauce (optional, but yummy)

To make the ginger onion paste, place scallions, shallots, ginger and sea salt in a food processor and pulse until chunky. Alternatively you could pound everything together using a mortar and pestle.  Heat the oil in a small pan until hot. Stir in the onion/ginger mixture, remove from the heat and transfer to a jar to cool.

For the tofu and mushrooms, pat tofu dry and cut into 8 equal slabs and arrange on a large plate or baking sheet. Rough chop the garlic and sprinkle it with garlic, continue chopping, sliding the side of the knive over top to create a paste. Place in a small bowl with the brown sugar and slowly whisk in the oil to create a smooth paste. Using a small pastry brush (or your fingers) slather both sides of the tofu with the marinade. Set aside and leave the bowl dirty.

Cook tofu in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat (you shouldn't need any additional oil) until golden brown on each side. Set aside to cool a bit.  When cool enough to handle, cut into strips.

Meanwhile, gently toss the mushrooms with the residual marinade left from the tofu bowl. Using the same skillet to cook the tofu, add a splash of oil and sautee the mushrooms until they take on a bit of color. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool.

To rehydrate vermacelli noodles, bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles, remove from the heat and let sit 2-3 minutes. Drain in a fine mesh strainer and refresh under cold water. Drain well and set aside.

To assemble the spring rolls, dip a spring roll wrapper in a bowl of hot water for five seconds. Place on a flat surface (I use my cutting board) and smear a generous amount of ginger onion paste in the middle. Next add a couple torn romaine lettuce leaves, a small amount of vermacelli noodles, three pieces of tofu and some cilantro. Roll the bottom of the wrap over the filling, fold in the sides and continue rolling.  Place rolls on a large plate covered with a damp paper towel to prevent from drying out. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.

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