There’s a reason why I wanted to make egg rolls. A couple of weeks ago, we went to get our car serviced and we were talking to the service manager who happened to be raving about his Vietnamese wife’s home-made egg rolls. Now, this is an older Caucasian man who was literally on the brink of drooling when he was talking about the fresh ingredients she uses and how he loves taking a bite of the hot egg roll right out of the fryer. That alone inspired me to go out and get ingredients for this egg roll dish. I knew it would yield quite a big batch, so the effort and hard work will pay off. I love when people talk about the great food they have, and how they appreciate their loved one’s cooking.
These are the ingredients we used to make the filling: ground pork, minced shrimp, diced shallots, chopped green onion, carrot shreds, bean thread (noodle), and chopped woodear mushrooms. (Note: We didn't take measurements of how much of each ingredient we used because we really just winged it. Besides, it doesn't really matter because you can cater this recipe to what you like, so feel free to add more or less of the aforementioned ingredients).
Mix all the ingredients together and season generously with salt and pepper. What we did in order to test the seasoning was cook a small mixture on the stove. This is the best way to check if the final outcome will taste good!
Once you are satisfied with the filling, spoon about this amount of the mixture on a corner of an egg roll wrapper. (The Asian market we went to didn't carry the thin wrappers, so we had to use this thicker kind. I highly suggest looking for the thin ones because it's not as doughy and will taste better).
Take the first corner and fold it up, then fold in the two sides. As you can see, it looks a little like an envelope.
Roll tightly up and use a beatened egg to seal the wrapper.
In case you were wondering, I was the egg "roller" and Daniel helped put in the filling on each wrapper. We made quite an interesting assembly line. In the end, you should have towers of egg rolls like this. I wrapped the extra ones in foil to put in the freezer for future egg roll cravings.
It's best if you put the egg rolls in the freezer for a bit before frying, so that it doesn't fall apart in the fryer. You can tell when the egg roll is done cooking by the golden brown color of the wrapper.
Like I mentioned before, the egg roll wrapper we used was the thick kind, so as you can see, it has some bubbles on the outside. Other than that, the filling was very tasty and came out better than I thought - considering we weren't using a recipe and neither one of us made egg rolls before.
What I like about egg rolls is that it's so versatile - you can eat it alone with a dipping sauce, or add it to your bowl of vermicelli noodles (to the Vietnamese readers out there: the infamous Bun Cha Gio). Enjoy!