Saturday, April 14, 2007

Vegetarian Popiah - Fresh Spring Rolls

Popiah or fresh spring rolls are a popular street food, which is filled with stewed julienned yam bean, beansprouts etc and wrapped in a paper-thin crepe.

Preparation: 20 mins, Cooking time: 25 mins

Ingredients (makes 10-12)
° 20-24 pieces fresh popiah wrappers
° 100g sweet sauce

Chilli Sauce
° 6 fresh red chilli,
° salt and sugar, to taste

Yam Bean Filling
° 600g yam bean, peeled, shredded and drained
° 2 chinese dried mushrooms, soaked and shredded
° 50g carrot, peeled and shredded
° 2 tablespoons vegetables oil
° 1 thin slice ginger or 1 clove garlic or 1 shallot
° ½ tablespoon salted soybean paste
° 350ml water
° 1½ tablespoons sugar, or to taste
° 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
° 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
° 1 teaspoon vegetarian oyster sauce
° 1 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
° 1 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)

Other Filling
° 12 chinese lettuce leaves
° 120g beansprouts, tailed and blanched
° 120g grounded peanut
° vegan ‘egg’ (optional)
° a small handful fresh coriander sprig


To prepare chilli sauce
1. Blend the chill in a blender or food processor until it is a smooth paste. Season to taste with salt and sugar.

To prepare yam bean filling
1. Heat oil in a wok. Add the ginger or garlic or shallot and fry till golden brown.
2. Add the salted soy bean paste and stir-fry briskly until aromatic.
3. Add the yam bean, mushrooms, carrot and stir-fry for 1 minute. Stir in water, sugar, salt, light soy sauce, vegetarian oyster. Stir occasionally and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and sauce is slightly dry. Season with sesame oil and pepper. Set aside and keep warm.

To wrap popiah
1. Place 2 fresh Popiah wrappers overlapping each other on chopping board. Spread sweet sauce and chilli sauce on it.
2. Place a small Chinese lettuce leaf in the centre and top with yam bean filling, beansprouts, grounded peanut, vegan ‘egg’ and coriander sprig.
3. Roll up and cut into 4 or 5 pieces and serve.
2. A pinch of chinese five-spice powder can be added, if desired. Vegetarian Oyster Sauce and Light Soy Sauce can be optional.

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