There are so many delicious fresh greens to be grown in the spring garden. While they are plentiful it is the perfect opportunity for making homemade egg rolls.
Some of my favorites in early spring are things like specialty Asian Greens, Pak Choys, Bok Choys, Spinach and Kales. Even tasty treats like tender fresh broccoli, bits and pieces of diced snow peas and snap peas are great additions.
While berry season is also enjoyed in the spring and we have been busy canning and preserving them into wonderful jams and jellies, we can use some for making a simple and delicious Sweet and Sour Sauce.
The combination of fresh from the garden spring greens and homegrown berries will surely tantalize those taste buds. With a bit of practice you will be well on your way to creating a treat for the entire family.
You will want to make plenty because they work well for freezing. This is something I love to do to make lunches and snacks a breeze by just warming them back up in the oven.
Rolling your skins takes just a bit of practice. If you are familiar with putting a clothe diaper on a baby then you may catch on quicker.
Lay out your skin on the angle and place a couple tablespoons of well drained mixture on the skin. Fold up the bottom corner. Fold over the two side corners and roll her up.
I mix a tiny bit of cornstarch with water and have it sitting in a cup near my work space. I dot the last corner of the skin with it and roll it up and over, sealing it. This will help the skin stick together.
After they are all rolled up I start deep frying them in a cast iron pot with hot oil. Be careful not to over stuff your egg rolls or they will not turn well when frying.
It is best to have all of your equipment and ingredients all organized and laid out before you begin. Keep everything handy, because once you begin it will all come together quickly.
Have a glass baking dish lined with coffee filters or a clean towel for draining your egg rolls once they come out of the fryer. The coffee filters help keep them from sticking to something like a paper towel.
It is also good to make the Sweet and Sour Sauce up first. I put mine in a glass jar in the refrigerator when it is finished. This allows for it to marinate and cool.
Egg Roll Skins
fresh minced garlic cloves
fresh grated ginger root
fresh minced sweet onion
cooking oil (Organic Canola or Peanut Oil)
fresh spinach leaves, chopped
cabbage, shredded or sliced very thin
bok choy or pak choy, chopped
3 or 4 small pork chops (Optional, but preferred)
Sweet and Sour Sauce
12 oz. of homemade preserves or jam. (Buy organic preserves or jam if need be)
2 tbsp. good quality white wine vinegar
1 packed tbsp. of brown sugar
1 tbsp. finely chopped onion
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
Sweet and Sour Sauce - Heat all the ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Take it off the heat and let cool. Place it in a mason jar with the lid on and refrigerate. When I'm making a huge quantity of eggrolls I usually double this recipe. You just can't have enough sweet and sour sauce!
- Begin by mincing 2 or 3 garlic cloves, 1/2 onion and grate at least a heaping tablespoon of ginger root. Reserve some of this for the sweet and sour sauce and set it all aside.
- Next put a tablespoon or so of oil in a skillet and cook the pork chops, seasoned with garlic powder. When they are done cut them up into very small bite size pieces. Set aside.
- Next prepare your vegetables. For the cabbage I slice it very thin and again cross length. The same for the spinach and bok choy. I grate the thick stems of the bok choy and the carrots and then sit it all aside.
- Next I start heating up my wok with a couple of tbsps. of oil on med. high heat. I put it the garlic, onion and ginger root. This will begin to really flavor up the oil. Then add your pork chops. Stir a bit to soak in the flavors. Add a few dashes of soy sauce. It is the oriental version of salt so use it to taste.
- Now add the vegetables. I use two long wooden spoons and use them like chop sticks. Take one in each hand and pull the meat from the bottom of the wok up into your vegetables. Do this just until the vegetables begin to get tender. If you feel you would like to add a little more soy sauce at this time go right ahead. I usually do to make sure I have enough for the vegetables.
- Pour everything into a large metal bowl with a lid or foil on top and place it in the refrigerator. By leaving it set for a bit, will allow the liquid to drain to the bottom. When your making your egg rolls you don't want liquid in your skins. This will cause them to be to wet and burn when you fry them.
- Drop a few egg rolls into the hot oil and begin to deep fry them until golden on both sides. Use tongs to take out of the oil and drain excess back into the pot. Lay them in a glass dish lined with coffee filters or a clean towel to finish draining.
Article by Pamela Kimsey
Pammy is a organic gardener in Southeast Texas who believes diversity with natural habitats is the key to a successful garden. With a background as a commercial grower and manager for a large wholesale nursery, she became quickly dismayed with the over use of chemicals and the effects they have on life and the environment.
Pamela has written 87 awesome articles for Natural Family Today.