Monday, November 15, 2010

Spring Rolls...Not Just For Summer


I buy these specialty Asian wrappers and fill them with fresh veggies. Sometimes I’ll have them with a small bowl of cold gazpacho. Just another way to get your daily dose.

Here is a great recipe for spring rolls and at just 62 calories and 0.7 grams of fat, I could get stuffed on these and never gain an ounce.

I don’t just make them in the summer. They are good any time and you can pair them with absolutely anything as a side of veggies dressed.

Spring Rolls:

• 2 ounces rice vermicelli

• 8 rice wrappers (8.5 inch diameter)

• 8 large cooked shrimp - peeled, deveined and cut in half

• 1 1/3 tablespoons chopped fresh Thai basil

• 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves

• 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

• 2 leaves lettuce, chopped

Fish Sauce:

• 4 teaspoons fish sauce

• 1/4 cup water

• 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

• 1 clove garlic, minced

• 2 tablespoons white sugar

• 1/2 teaspoon garlic chili sauce

Hoisin Sauce:

• 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce

• 1 teaspoon finely chopped peanuts

Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil. Boil rice vermicelli 3 to 5 minutes, or until al dente, and drain.

Fill a large bowl with warm water. Dip one wrapper into the hot water for 1 second to soften. Lay wrapper flat. In a row across the center, place 2 shrimp halves, a handful of vermicelli, basil, mint, cilantro and lettuce, leaving about 2 inches uncovered on each side. Fold uncovered sides inward, then tightly roll the wrapper, beginning at the end with the lettuce. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

In a small bowl, mix the fish sauce, water, lime juice, garlic, sugar and chili sauce.

In another small bowl, mix the hoisin sauce and peanuts.

Serve rolled spring rolls with the fish sauce and hoisin sauce mixtures.

Speaking of getting your daily dose of veggies and fruit (Nine servings translate to about 2 cups of fruit and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables every day.) you’ll hardly notice you’ve made an effort if you follow these hints:

 Always buy them super fresh and store them properly.

 Dice veggies and scramble them into eggs.

 Make wraps and load them up with fresh veggies. Add a little turkey if you are dying for a little protein.

 Rotate them frequently so you don’t tire of them.

 Eat a veggie sandwich at Subway. They are so good with hot peppers and honey mustard dressing. I could eat one every day and not get sick of them.

 Make sure that at least half your plate is veggies.

 Start lunch and dinner with a small salad or have an entrée salad for your meal.

 Order pizza with extra veggies.

 Put berries in your granola and yogurt.

 Eat dried fruit.

 Treat yourself to a veggie burger.

 Make a fruit salad and keep it in your refrigerator to serve with every meal.

 Make a smoothie.

 Try new veggies. Research them on the internet and try new recipes.

 Make your spaghetti sauce with lots of veggies. Shred the veggies so your kids don’t know your sauce is loaded. Veggies can be used in a lot of sauces.

 Make fresh salsa and use it on everything.

 Make a veggie soup and use leftover meats to flavor them.

 Add a little sweet and sour sauce to veggies.

 Drink a V8.

 Throw veggies on the grill – my favorite way of eating them.

 Go vegetarian one day a week.

Bon Appetit!