Thursday, December 3, 2015

Fresh Spring Rolls with Vegetables and Paprika-Pepper Vinaigrette

I decided to try the vegetarian Recipe Dice from Leafcutter Designs because I love vegetables, and have no problem eating a veggie-centric meal, unlike my husband who is a carnivore at heart. These dice were so fun! When you’re tired of making the same old thing, they give your creativity a boost.

For this recipe, it’s probably easiest to do most of the steps a day ahead of time. That will let the mushrooms soak up a good amount of vinaigrette, and will leave just the assembly of the rolls, which should be done shortly before you plan to serve them. Keep the assembled rolls on top of and covered with damp paper towels then cover that in plastic wrap to keep them from drying out and/or sticking to each other.

The amount of each ingredient needed will depend somewhat on how much of each you put in your spring rolls. The amounts I’ve given are estimates. Mix up anything that’s left over in a bowl with some vinaigrette and you’ve got a great little salad! You’ll also likely have some paprika oil left over, but once you try it you’ll be glad you have extra!

Fresh Spring Rolls with Vegetables and Paprika-Pepper Vinaigrette
by Jennifer Scantlin

For the paprika oil:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons ground paprika

For the vinaigrette:
3 Tablespoons paprika oil (from above)
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
1 small clove garlic, minced or put through a garlic press
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon lemon juice

For the couscous:
1/2 cup Israeli couscous
1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup water

For the marinated mushrooms:
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
8 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon salt

To assemble the Spring Rolls:
Prepared Israeli couscous
Prepared vinaigrette
Marinated mushrooms
1/2 zucchini or yellow squash, julienned
2-3 leaves Swiss chard, sliced into thin strips
8 dried spring roll wrappers (they look like very thin and hard tortillas)

Make the paprika oil: Combine the oil and paprika in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat, stirring occasionally, until warm, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and let sit until cool, about one hour. Strain mixture into a bowl or glass through a coffee filter or several layers of cheesecloth.

Make the vinaigrette: Combine all ingredients in a small bowl or jar with lid and whisk or shake well.

Make the couscous: Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the couscous and stir continuously until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the water and salt and bring to a boil. Cover pan with lid and turn heat to low. Cook until couscous is tender, 8-10 minutes. Remove pan from heat, place couscous in a bowl and add a tablespoon of the vinaigrette. Stir to combine and let cool.

Cook mushrooms: Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium high heat. Add mushrooms and cook until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Add salt and stir to combine. Place mushrooms in a bowl with the remaining vinaigrette and stir to coat. Let sit at room temperature at least an hour, or place in refrigerator overnight.

Assemble the rolls: Have a large, smooth work surface to assemble rolls on. Place some warm water into a large pie plate. Place a spring roll wrapper into the pie plate and submerge in the water with your hands. You will feel the wrapper getting soft. When the entire wrapper is soft, place it flat on your work surface. Place the fillings in the middle of the wrapper and fold the wrapper in half over the filling. Fold in the sides and continue to roll up. Place on a plate lined with damp paper towels and cover with more damp paper towels then plastic wrap. Don’t let the rolls touch one another or they may stick together. Continue with remaining wrappers until all ingredients have been used. Enjoy!

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