Pork Spring Rolls
Pork Spring Rolls
Makes about 24 Spring Rolls
1 lb Ground Pork
2 tsp salt
1 tsp fish sauce
2 Tbsp Oyster sauce or Hoisin Sauce
2 c shredded carrots
2 c shredded celery
2 c shredded potatoes (optional)
1/2 package of rice noodles
1-2 package of spring roll wrappers
1 egg with 2 tsp of water whisked
6-8 c of vegetable oil
Separate the rice noodles and soak in a bowl with hot water for 5 minutes.
While the rice is soaking, separate the wrappers from each other. Cover with a damp towel and set aside.
Mix all the ingredients for the filling in a bowl with your hands. You can try the filling by cooking a small spoon full it on a pan. Adjust with salt and/or fish sauce to your desired taste.
Use a spoon to scoop filling onto the wrapper and fold. (example below) Be sure to fold the spring roll tightly and seal the end corner with the egg wash.
Heat up your deep fryer on high with vegetable oil. Be sure the temperature is on high before you drop the spring rolls in. Cook for about 10-12 minutes.
Tip: Check the first batch, after it’s cooled down, by cutting it in half to make sure the pork has fully cooked. Adjust the time if needed.
Tip: If you can’t serve them right away, but them on a drying rack so the crust doesn’t get soggy.
There’s a scene in the movie Crazy Rich Asians where Constance Wu’s character and her boyfriends family were folding dumpling around the table. Everyone compared their dumplings to the grandma and how perfect she had folded them. That was my family and pork spring rolls. Sans the crazy rich asian part and we were sitting on the floor on a ka toke, a traditional Laotian table used to eat and prepare meals on. We would sit on the floor on a mat and on roll the pork spring rolls as we chit chat.
It took me the better part of 25 years to learn to roll them correctly so that they looked like the ones the experienced Laotian women made. But like everything else, it got better the more I practice.
I used to make these on special occasions but now, I usually just find an excuse to roll them up and serve them. Superbowl party, someone’s birthday, College Football Championship game, March Madness. Somehow, they always revolved around sports since they make a great finger food and I can roll them out fresh when we’re at home.
Here’s a little cheat sheet on how to roll the spring rolls:
Be sure to pull them as tight as you can without breaking the wrapping. That way, most of the air is pulled out and it doesn’t bubble when you deep fry it. I used to think big spring rolls were better, but in order to get the middle of the spring roll fried and not burn the outer wrapping, the smaller the better. A normal spoonful is about the amount I use to get these the prefect size.
I like to get the kids involved since it was how I learned to roll spring rolls. They like to eat them up as well.
If you don’t have a deep fryer, you could also fry them on the stove in a sauté pan and be sure to turn them half way through.
If you get really over zealous here’s a rough recipe on my spring roll sauce I make. to go along with it.
Tip: I make this outside on my grill burner because it requires fish sauce and it can really stink up the house.
Sweet Fish Sauce Dip
1 c sugar
2-4 Tbsp Fish sauce
2 cups of water
1-2 Tbsp of chili garlic sauce
roasted peanuts (optional)
shredded carrots for garnish
Brown the sugar in a sauce pan on medium-low heat. Don’t walk away from this or it will burn. Stir until the sugar will start to melt and turn brown.
Add 2 Tbsp of fish sauce and stir then immediately while adding the water. Stir until all the sugar has dissolved. You can add more fish sauce depending on how strong you want it.
Add the chili garlic sauce depending on the amount of spice you desire.
Crush peanuts and serve with sauce.
Tip: I only add peanuts and shredded carrots to the sauce I serve up immediately. The peanuts will get soggy if you leave them in the sauce for too long.
Here are some of my favorite items that I like to use in this recipe. The Menlo wrappers are the best I’ve used out of the others I’ve tried. You can usually get these at your local asian grocery store.