Monday, January 24, 2011

Portabello Spring Rolls, Lemongrass Peanut Sauce, Carrot Chutney

I like when spring rolls have a combination of cooked and raw vegetables. It allows a great crunch and flavor to come through with each bite. I took advantage of the porous nature of the mushrooms and marinated them before crisping them up.

Rice paper wrapped spring rolls with crunchy yellow bell pepper, fresh mint and cilantro, baby arugula and marinated portabello mushrooms with crisp sweet potato. Served with a lemon grass-infused peanut sauce and sweet carrot chutney.

Spring Rolls
2 tbl mirin
2 tbl soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 portabello mushroom, veins cleaned, matchsticks
1 small sweet potato, peeled and cut into matchsticks
2 tbl cornstarch
3 tbl grapeseed oil
1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 cup packed baby arugula
1/4 cup cilantro sprigs
2 tbl fresh mint leaves
spring roll wrappers

Combine mirin, soy sauce and sesame oil in a snack bag or bowl and toss in the portabello matchsticks. Cover and marinate for at least 1 hour but preferably 4.
Bring a small pot of salted water to a boil and boil the sweet potato until almost tender but not completely cooked(around 5 minutes). Drain, shock in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking, then drain again and pat dry.
Heat the grapeseed oil up in a small saute pan, coat the portabello and sweet potato matchsticks in cornstarch and pan fry until crisp. Drain on a paper towel and lightly sprinkle with sea salt.
Submerge the spring roll wrappers in water, one at a time, until pliable. Fill with mushrooms, sweet potato, yellow bell pepper, arugula, a couple cilantro sprigs and 2 mint leaves. Wrap up tightly like a burrito.

Lemongrass Peanut Sauce
1 cup water
1 lemongrass stalk, smashed and chopped in 5 pieces
1 tsp fresh minced ginger
1/4 cup hoisin
3 tbl smooth sweetened peanut butter
2 tbl organic sugar

Bring the water and lemongrass to a simmer in a small sauce pot. Simmer for 5 minutes. Pick out the lemongrass and discard. Add the remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth over medium heat for 2 minutes or until the sauce has thickened. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Carrot Chutney
3 large carrots, small dice
2 cups water
2 tsp fresh minced ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup turbinado sugar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
pinch red pepper flakes
sea salt

Combine the diced carrot, water, ginger and garlic in a small sauce pot. Bring to a simmer and cook over low heat for 20 minutes. Add the sugar, vinegar and red pepper flakes and simmer for 25 more minutes or until the liquid has evaporated. Season with salt to taste. Serve warm or chill.

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