Every family has their own special traditions that make the holidays meaningful and personal. For my family- cutting down our own tree, hauling out our old boxes of decorations, cranking up the Christmas tunes and trekking to the mall for Santa photos all make it feel like the festive season.
We also have a few weird and wacky traditions that make our family celebration unique. One such tradition was started by my parents many years ago: every December my mom and dad would faithfully make a special trip a Chinese restaurant in Ottawa, Ontario to pick up dozens of their world-famous egg rolls that we would eat with friends and family on Christmas Eve. Nothing says Christmas to me like an egg roll and a big old glass of Screech and eggnog! (well Soy Nog now ; )
However since the traditional rolls contained meat, I’ve offered to make homemade veggie rolls for the last few years. Trust me – this was a risky offer because my family LOVES their egg rolls and I didn’t want to disappoint the troops. But thanks to an amazing recipe by my good friend Lisa, everyone happily gobbles up the Vegetable Egg Rolls and enjoys them just as much as the pork-filled rolls of yesteryear. Whew!
So this Christmas Eve we will be savouring the company of our family, sipping our Screech-laced nog and chowing down on some truly delicious Vegetable Egg Rolls. Thanks for saving our night-before-Christmas Lisa!
Makes 8-10 rolls
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1/2 head napa cabbage, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- handful fresh chopped cilantro
- handful fresh sprouts
- 4 crimini mushrooms, finely chopped
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp peanut oil
- 1 tsp dark sesame oil
- 1 tbsp shoyu
- 1 package egg roll wrappers
To heated med/high-high skillet add peanut oil, sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Stir fry quickly for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add all other vegetables. Saute for 2 minutes, add shoyu and cook until liquid is absorbed. Remove from pan and set aside.
Wipe pan out with paper towel and add remaining oil. Slowly heat to medium.
To make rolls:
- Lay wrapper on clean counter in a diamond shape with the point facing you.
- Place a heaping table-spoon of mixture into centre of wrapper
- Take bottom corner and fold over mixture, tucking corner under the filling and gently pulling it toward you to grab the mixture
- Fold in the right and left sides, making an “envelope” shape
- Roll the form away from you, “sealing” your envelope by putting a little water with your finger on the final corner. Roll up and press the corner down gently to seal.
Once your oil is hot, gently place egg rolls into pan seam side down. Ensure they are not touching, don’t over crowd them or they will steam and not get nice and crunchy.
Fry the egg rolls for 30 seconds to 1 minute per side, turning a quarter turn each time to ensure all sides brown evenly. Once all sides are done (they should be golden and bubbly), place on paper towel to drain.