Spring has sprung, and a great way to celebrate the season is with fresh spring rolls. Not only are these rolls tasty and appealing, they are also healthy. The quinoa and shrimp pack on the protein, while the veggies supply a variety of essential vitamins.
Another great aspect about spring rolls is that you can add whatever you like, making them customizable based on your preferences. Other ingredients may include: peppers, chicken, tofu, mint, cilantro, bean sprouts, or rice noodles. In this recipe, I happened to use what I had available in my kitchen.
Vietnamese Quinoa Spring Rolls:
- 12 rice paper wrappers (found in most grocery stores in the ethnic food aisles)
- 1/2 cup quinoa
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cucumber
- 2 large carrots
- 2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil
- 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
- 1 avocado, chopped
- green lettuce
- 1 lb. cooked shrimp
- 1/2 lemon
Rinse and drain quinoa. Pour into medium saucepan, and add chicken broth. Bring to a boil, cover the saucepan, lower the heat and let cook for 15 minutes. Then let the quinoa sit for 5 more minutes, covered. Set aside.
Slice the cucumber and carrots into long (about 2.5″), thin strips and chop lettuce. Peel tails off the shrimp and squeeze lemon over them, to help keep the odor fresh.
Fill a large bowl with warm water. Carefully dip a rice wrapper into the water, covering for about 10 seconds. Lift out of the bowl and lay flat on a surface that helps soak up the water, like a cloth or placemat.
Place 3 shrimp in a row slightly above the center of the rice wrapper. Place 2 slices carrot and 2 slices cucumber on either sides of the shrimp, as pictured above. Sprinkle shrimp with basil and green onions.
Place 2 tablespoons of cooked quinoa inside a green lettuce leaf. Place on top of the shrimp.
Place 4 pieces of chopped avocado onto the lettuce filled with quinoa.
Fold both sides of the rice paper toward the center, as pictured above.
Fold over the top, while gently tucking in the filling.
Roll towards you until the filling is completely wrapped. Ta da!
Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped ginger
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha
Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger, stirring constantly for about 1 and a half minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients until smooth, and bring to a simmer. Bring to room temperature, then chill sauce for about an hour. Pour into a bowl and serve with spring rolls. Happy eating!