This recipe was submitted by Vanessa Baron, mom, wife, Holistic Nutritionist, Success Coach, free spirit and lover of all things veg.
Summer is not over yet!
We’re summer babies for sure and definitely aren’t ready to start pumpkin spicing everything. We’d rather savour these last moments with light and airy foods that cool us down and make us smile. So, we live up every warm day that we possibly can and keep looking for the best summer fresh recipes, because, as Ned Stark would say, “winter is coming”, and we’re never ready for that.
(Yes, we did just throw down a Game of Thrones quote…. because… #GOT)
We’ve been having long talks about where the summer and spring roll names came from, and while we still aren’t 100% sure, we do know both styles of ‘rolls’ are delicious. The difference between the two is that one is cooked/ fried, and one is wrapped in rice paper and generally served uncooked or raw. Spring rolls can literally be translated from the Chinese term, chūn juǎn and, summer rolls come from Vietnam and can be translated to ‘salad roll’, ‘nam roll’, or ‘rice paper roll’ depending on where you are in the country. Neat huh?
Now that the partial, and incomplete history lesson on summer rolls is out of the way, we want to tell you why we love them so much. Traditionally, they are served with pork, seafood or tofu, but what we absolutely love about them is how fresh and versatile they are. You can jam pack them with so many different veggies, and after rolling them up and dipping them in a savoury peanut sauce, you won’t even know there are veggies in there.
HOW TO TURN THESE SEXY ROLLS INTO AN ENTIRE MEAL
Summer rolls are amazing, delicious, and believe it or not, incredibly filling. It’s most likely due to what we’re filling them with, you can 100% make these into a meal, the key is protein! We’re all about the julienned veggies + the cabbage, you know, the mini salad stuff, but stuffing some avocado (healthy fats), and sprouted organic tofu (plant based protein), will make these salad wraps go from a tasty side dish to an amazing main meal. Yes, they are that filling! And keeping them vegetarian/ vegan, is an awesome way to get your ‘Meatless Monday’ or ‘Salad Sunday’ in!
Test out the recipe below, because it’s hands down one of the best we’ve tried, but also feel free to get creative with summer rolls. They are so beautiful to create because their versatility allows for some wonderful colour options, think red strawberries, purple cabbage and green sprouts, a literal rainbow of colours can be added to these rolls, and we like to live our lives with colourful food on our plates, because natural colour in food usually means antioxidants!
Here are some of our favourite spring roll colour and flavour combinations:
Tofu + cucumber + red pepper + avocado + lime
Tofu + mango + carrot + cabbage + sprouts
Lox + strawberries + avocado + cucumber + beets
Shrimp + carrots + cabbage + cucumber + avocado + lime
Mexi-spiced tempeh + corn + avocado + lime + cilantro + rice noodles
These are only a few ideas, but the possibilities are endless, really. Let us know what you love to stuff in your summer roll in the comments below.
Fresh Summer Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce
- Place dry bean threads into a bowl and pour hot water over them, allowing them to soak for about 5 minutes. Drain.
- Once the bean threads are ready, take one rice paper sheet and dip each side into a bowl of hot water until flexible (approximately 3-5 seconds). Place the rice paper sheet on a cutting board or other flat surface.
- Assemble some bean threads, purple cabbage, bell pepper, strawberries,
- avocado and cilantro on the soaked rice paper, in the middle towards the side closest to you.
- Take the side that is closest to you and pull it over the filling, making sure the edge reaches around to the other side, securing the filling in its place.
- Take the left side of the rice paper and fold it over. Do the same thing on the right side.
- Finish the roll by rolling it completely (much like rolling a burrito).
Repeat steps 2-6 until each roll has been made.
- *If using tofu cut into long thin strips, and cook over medium heat in 2 tablespoons of sesame oil
Peanut Tamari Dip
- Add the tamari sauce to the peanut butter and mix.
- Slowly add warm water and mix until you get a thin creamy consistency
- Stop and mix in-between so you don't add to much water.
- Add chopped peanuts to garnish.
*Alternatively, if you cannot find soaked bean threads organic sprouted tofu works nicely as well. *If using tofu cut into long thin strips, and cook over medium heat in 2 tablespoons of sesame oil.
Rockin' Salutes! My name's Vanessa Baron and I'm a mom, wife, Holistic Nutritionist, Success Coach, free spirit and lover of all things veg. I created The Radiant Herbivore for anyone interested in adopting or refining a plant-based diet. I'm a firm believer that being healthy doesn't mean your life has to be boring or complicated - in fact, I believe food should be an adventure and add some luxury to your life. I learned to ditch the notion of being perfect a long time ago - I still nosh on chocolate, attend BBQs and potlucks, eat out at restaurants and sip on fine wine. You won't find me counting calories or worrying about carb + fat intake either - there's seriously no need when you're nourishing your body with healthy, whole foods!