Is there any food more appropriate for summer than summer rolls?
Of course not.
Besides being named for the season, summer rolls are everything you want from a warm weather edible. They require little or no cooking, which makes for a cooler kitchen as well as a cooler mouthful. They easily accommodate seasonal ingredients, and more importantly, they're something most of us have only had in restaurants.
There are many reasons to cook for yourself, but the best is vanity. Sure eating at home tends to involve less fat and salt and more community, but what you really want from a home cooked meal is to replicate something that you previously thought only came from a menu, and to gloat about it.
Lording over a plate of pudgy, translucent summer rolls as thick and nutritious as enormous grubs while in the comfort of my own kitchen makes me feel like a king. Knowing that my version costs a fraction of what I would pay at a restaurant makes me feel like a king who is also very rich.
We started making s.r.'s with raw tofu, basil, mung noodles, bok choi and peanut sauce on the side, but the current and preferred evolution involves the same noodles plus fried tofu, cilantro, cucumber and a vat of chili paste in which to schmear these pliant little wraps.
I'd write up a recipe if there were anything to it besides this: buy rice paper wrappers. Moisten them and fill with whatevs.
Monday, July 26, 2010
Posted by Aaron Kagan at 9:35 AM