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Egg Rolls

Egg Rolls

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Makes about 1 dozen.
By Dennis W. Viau; from a college girlfriend.

I practically lived on egg rolls in college. They were inexpensive to make and I could store a lot of them in the freezer. One friend of mine, Ward, often called me. "Can I come over for egg rolls?" We were dirt poor, and egg rolls kept us alive. I learned this recipe from a Vietnamese girlfriend in college. This is probably the oldest recipe card in my recipe box. Made with meat, these egg rolls are practically a meal unto themselves.

Ingredients:

1 cup chopped meat (optional), such as turkey, chicken, pork, ham, shrimp, whatever
2 stalks celery; finely chopped
3 green onions; finely chopped
2 ounces (57g) bean sprouts; chopped
2 or 3 sprigs Italian (flat leaf) parsley; finely chopped
¼ teaspoon fresh ginger root; minced
2 cloves garlic; minced or crushed with a garlic press
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce (extract of anchovy) or 1 anchovy fillet
A few gratings of fresh ground pepper
Any herbs you like (pinch of tarragon, marjoram, oregano, etc.)
Egg roll skins (sometimes seen as egg roll wrappers)
6 cups vegetable oil for frying
Dipping Sauce:
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoons rice vinegar
¼ teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons plum sauce or apricot jam

Directions:

Combine all the ingredients (except the egg roll skins and oil) in a large bowl and mix well.

Place a heaping tablespoon of filling on an egg roll wrapper and roll up, sealing the last corner with a little water. (See the photographs below for step-be-step instructions of this technique.)

Heat oil to 350°F (175°C) in a deep saucepan. Fry egg rolls, a few at a time (do not crowd the pan), turning occasionally, about 3 minutes. Using a metal strainer or "spider," remove to paper towels to drain.

Use a whisk to combine the Dipping Sauce ingredients and pour into small individual serving-size bowls.

Egg Rolls can be served as a snack or side dish with a Chinese meal, such as my Chicken and Snow Peas.