Maine Shrimp Spring Rolls
We're always looking for a new way to use our beloved Maine shrimp. Thankfully, the season this year goes until May 29 so I've got plenty of time to come up with more ways to work them in. This dish was an experiment, the first time I'd made shrimp spring rolls, but the results were very satisfying.
These fresh spring rolls were inspired by a roll that we get from a favorite local restaurant, The Green Elephant, which offers an Asian-influenced vegetarian menu. Of course they don't have shrimp in their spring rolls but the combination of mint, cilantro and lime with the crunch of lettuce, cucumber and carrot is a natural fit with Maine shrimp for those of us who don't have issues with crustaceans as food.
As might be expected, these rolls are perfect for weight- and glucose-control diet plans, with only 57 calories, 1 gram of fat, 9 grams of carbohydrates and 1 Weight Watchers point per roll.
Maine Shrimp Spring Rolls
Makes 10 spring rolls.
- 1 pound Maine shirmp, peeled – about 50 shrimp
- 1 lemon, cut in quarters
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 1 lime, halved
- 1/2 cup cilantro, minced
- 30 leaves fresh mint
- 10 leaves lettuce
- 2 cups chopped lettuce
- 1 seedless English cucumber
- 1 large carrot
- 10 Vietnamese spring roll wrappers, 8" diameter
- 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 1/4 tablespoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon Vietnamese hot garlic chili sauce
- 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter
1. Bring 2 quarts water to a boil in a 3 quart pot. Add the salt. Squeeze the lemon quarters into the boiling water and then drop them into the water. Allow the water to boil for five or so minutes to infuse the lemon.
2. Add the shrimp to the boiling pot. Allow to cook for about a 75 seconds and remove immediately with a slotted spoon or by pouring through a colander. Allow shrimp to drain for a minute or two, then place the shrimp in a bowl and squeeze the lime over the shrimp through a small strainer. Stir to combine shrimp and lime juice.
3. Peel the carrot and cut in matchsticks. Wash the cucumber but do not peel it and cut into matchsticks.
4. Make the dipping sauce by combining the listed ingredients and stirring until smooth.
5. Place warm water in a pie pan (with a larger diameter than your spring roll wrappers) to about 1/2" depth.
6. To assemble the spring rolls: submerge a wrapper in the warm water for a quick count of 3. Remove immediately, allow to drain for a second and then lay it on your board. Starting from the left edge of the wrapper, lay down a line of 5 shrimp along the center of the wrapper, stopping about 2" short of the right side. Place a lettuce leaf over the shrimp, aligning the right end of the leaf with the rightmost shrimp. Scatter in some cilantro and 3 mint leaves and then place about 10 each of the carrot and cucumber sticks, with their ends overlapping the left edge of the wrapper. Scatter in about 1/4 cup of the chopped lettuce.
Starting from the edge directly in front of you, lift and wrap the wrapper forward over the filling. Fold the right side of the wrapper in to the left, over the filling, and then continue to turn the spring roll away from you, tucking the filling inside the wrapper as you go. For an excellent sequence of photos demonstrating this technique, go to Spring Rolling 101 at the White on Rice Couple blog. (While you're there, do some exploring to find many more recipes and suggestions for spring rolls.)
Serve on a platter, with small individual bowls of the dipping sauce for each diner.