Monthly Archives: February 2014

…crunch time ~ Let’s ROLL!

Sunshine.Finally.  Enough with this winter already.  Here’s hoping we are on the back side of this one here in my neck of the woods….

Even my taste buds are in need of something fresh.  It has been way too long since I’ve thrown together some of my egg rolls, and I’m longing for something crispy and crunchy.  My inspiration for this came from one of the first cookbooks I was ever given decades ago.  My uncle and aunt lived up in Michigan (might as well have been a foreign country back in the day when I was a little girl).  Every year me, mama and my Ma Hocutt would fly up there to visit.  They would take us to this “WEIRD” restaurant to eat food we’d never heard tell of… Chinese!  It was years before I realized I like that kind of food, because they would order stuff for us they liked… like wonton soup (ewwwww).  And Moo Goo Gai Pan (ewwww…too boring).  But over time, as I tried new things, I loved it.  So seeing blossoming cook that I was, they gifted me with a Chinese cookbook.  I had mama help me find egg roll wrappers and that was all she wrote.   I have made no telling how many of these over the years… mostly this recipe, but sometimes I’ve thrown in other fridge leftovers or tweaked a bit one way or the other.  I love egg rolls and have made them from barbecue and slaw, to fruit filled ones like these blueberry ones below too.  Friends beg me for these, and when having girls’ beach or river weekends, egg rolls are always on the menu… we even eat them cold for breakfast the next morning… IF there are any leftover.  They are fun food… and who doesn’t like fun food?

I have thrown together Duck Sauce from scratch and used store bought too.  I’ve used peach chutney, peach preserves, made pineapple concoctions and apricot variations.  So use whatever you can find or throw together your own.  Just make egg rolls.  They only appear to be intimidating… but are super easy to make, wrap and fry.  Be creative with leftovers… Just open the fridge and see what you can find in there to throw together, wrap and cook!

Let’s ROLL!

Wendy's Pork & Shrimp Egg Rolls

Wendy’s Pork & Shrimp Egg Rolls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wendy’s Pork & Shrimp Egg Rolls

Servings: makes about 20 egg rolls

Wendy’s Pork & Shrimp Egg Rolls

What to throw together...

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 cold water
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 4+ tablespoons garlic (I use the "squeeze" garlic from produce section)
  • 2 pounds ground pork, cooked and crumbled
  • 6 cups shredded cabbage
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • 2 bunches scallion, chopped
  • 1 pound small salad size shrimp, cooked
  • 1 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 package egg roll wrappers
  • 1 egg, beaten in small bowl with 2 tablespoons water
  • lard or favorite cooking oil

How to throw together...

  1. Blend soy sauce into the cornstarch. Whisk in water and molasses. Set aside.
  2. In wok (or large skillet), heat the oil over high heat.
  3. Stir in garlic and whirl around in the oil for 30 seconds.
  4. Add pork, cabbage, carrot and scallion. Cook about 3 minutes or until the vegetables are crisp-tender.
  5. Stir in shrimp.Scatter with sesame seed.
  6. Give the cornstarch mixture a stir and pour over the hot mixture. Stir just to glaze and thicken the filling.
  7. Set aside to cool before wrapping.
  8. To Wrap, place the wrappers with one of the corners pointing towards you. Spoon 2 tablespoons of filling across center of wrapper.
  9. Fold bottom corner over filling.
  10. Fold in each side and roll towards back corner.
  11. Brush edges with the egg wash.
  12. Place on wax paper or foil with pan spray (to prevent sticking).
  13. Fry a few at the time in hot oil, making sure not to crowd.
  14. Keep warm on a cake cooling rack placed on baking pan in oven on low temperature until ready to serve!

Blueberry & Pear Egg Rolls

Blueberry & Pear Egg Rolls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blueberry and Pear Savory Egg Rolls

Blueberry and Pear Savory Egg Rolls

What to throw together...

  • 1 20-count package egg roll wrappers
  • 1 tablespoon unflavored oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 cups small dice Bartlett Pears
  • 1 pound fresh blueberries (can sub frozen if off season), reserve a few for garnish
  • pinch kosher or sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons blueberry jam
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup finely diced red onion
  • 2 teaspoons apple pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 cup toasted pecan pieces
  • small amount water-cornstarch slurry
  • lard for frying
  • TOPPING
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • 1 ounce cream cheese with chive, softened
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • chopped fresh chive, optional

How to throw together...

  1. Heat oil and butter in large heavy skillet over medium heat.
  2. Once the pan is hot and butter is melted, add the pears and blueberries.
  3. Cook, stirring frequently.
  4. After about 5 minutes, or when pears are tender but still have a little bite to them, stir in salt, jam, sugar, onion, apple pie spice and thyme.
  5. Cook about 3 minutes until sugar has melted and ingredients have married.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in pecans. Chill filling for several hours or overnight to thicken.
  7. While making the egg rolls, head lard in deep fryer to 375.
  8. Have an assembly line ready for filling and cooking egg rolls. You'll need wrappers, filling with slotted spoon and water-cornstarch slurry.Unless you are wrapping all in a short period of time, keep the wrappers covered with a damp cloth.
  9. ASSEMBLE: Lay a wrapper on clean dry surface such as wooden cutting board. With slotted spoon, scoop out and place about 1 heaping tablespoon of filling across bottom corner. Lift and roll the bottom corner over the filling until about halfway across the wrapper. Fold one side, then the other into the center. Keep dipping your fingers into the cornstarch slurry to dampen and seal the wrapper. This helps hold it together for a tight roll to keep your egg roll from getting oily inside. Lay on oil sprayed wax paper or foil.
  10. COOK: Gently add rolls into heated oil making sure not to crowd in the oil. Fry until browned and crispy, about 2-3 minutes. Remove with tongs onto raised rack lined with paper towels. Make sure oil has returned to 375 in-between batches before adding more egg rolls. If the oil is not hot enough, you will have soggy rolls. Keep warm on pan in oven until ready to serve.
  11. SAVORY WHIPPED CREAM: Using mixer, whip cream until stiff, adding sugar a tablespoon at the time starting about halfway through whipping. Add the cream cheese a tablespoon at the time and whip into cream. Keep chilled until serving.
  12. SERVING: Place warm egg roll onto dessert plate. Add a dollop of Savory Whipped Cream... and dig in!

 

…a few new snow concoctions!

We have had well more than our desired share of snow this winter here in central North Carolina.  Sitting here watching the pretty snowflakes and dozens of birds grazing, I try to enjoy the moment while feeling the dread and impending doom of the sleet/freezing rain on our doorstep.  Once that arrives, our fluffy snow will be just ruined for any good snow cream but I did throw together a couple of new goodies this afternoon.

You’ll need a batch of my Snow Cream Custard “sauce” for starters.  From that, you will be able to make the “CheeseCake Snow Cream” and the “Krispy Kreme SnowKake” too.  So here you go… a quickie post with today’s frozen goodies… including “SnowMaRita Shots!”  If you are in the path of this storm… stay in, stay safe and stay warm!

Gather a bowl of fluffy snow.  Drizzle with some of my Snow Cream Custard “sauce.”  Start with small amount…you can always more as needed to thicken.  Sprinkle with some Jello Instant Cheesecake Pudding Mix.  Whirl into custard.  Let sit in bowl about 5 minutes (sit back outside the door!) so pudding mix will dissolve.  EAT!

cheesecake snow cream pm

CheeseCake Snow Cream

Warm a Krispy Kreme doughnut in a bowl.  Top with Wendy’s Snow Cream Custard or also just as good, some of the Cheesecake Snow Cream!  Add a dollop of whipped cream, and a bright red cherry!

Krispy Kreme SnowKake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shake some Lime Jello powder into a bowl of fluffy snow.   Whisk around to mix and let the jello dissolve.  Grab your best top shelf tequila (that you already put out in the snow to chill).  Serve as shots with a shot o’ lime ice or throw together and enjoy sip’n together!  

SnowMaRita Shots

SnowMaRita Shots

Ribs… for the winter that won’t quit!

Mercy!  I’m about d.o.n.e. with this winter… snow, cold, icey mix… and power bills that may necessitate selling off body parts to pay for….
here in central North Carolina, here we go again.  I did the obligatory grocery store stomp earlier.  In some ways, I must secretly admit I kinda like all that frenzy in there.  I love grocery stores and grocery shopping anyway, and days like this make it a social event.  A couple of weeks ago, you may remember getting a post from me and the snow cocktails I had fun creating during our last “event.”  I have a couple of ideas for this week too… something Krispy Kremeish and something Cheesecakeish, so stay tuned for those.

But there is just something inside me that begs for MEAT… hearty MEAT, during inclement weather.  I guess the cavewoman in me comes out and puts me into survival mode, and chunks of marbled meat on big bones fills the bill.  I thought I had blogged these before, but when I came here today to share with folks, low and behold, I find I have been derelict in doing that.  So without further delay, because you do need to get to the store for your ribs and the 2 or 3 other things you’ll need, here ya go.  I  hope some of you will throw some of these in your oven this week while homebound, and be sure to leave that oven door open when done to take advantage of that free heat as the oven cools down.

 

Wendy's Winter Ribs!

Wendy’s Winter Ribs!

Wendy

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 27 minutes

Wendy

What to throw together...

  • 1-2 rack(s) beef ribs
  • 1-2 large onions (I prefer sweet onions)
  • 1 jar of your fav North Carolina sweet thickish tomato-y BBQ sauce
  • *beef broth or can of onion soup, undliuted
  • 1 turkey size roasting bag

How to throw together...

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Place roasting bag onto baking pan.
  3. Place ribs into the bag, cutting into chunks if need be to fit.
  4. *If you like extra saucy ribs, pour broth or soup over the ribs BEFORE pouring on the BBQ sauce.
  5. Throw some sliced onions on top of the ribs.
  6. Pour BBQ sauce over the onions and ribs. Squish around from outside of bag to distribute the sauce all over your ribs.
  7. Close bag per instructions.
  8. Bake at 400 for about 30 minutes. Reduce heat and continue cooking for about 1 hour. Ribs should be fork tender after about 1 1/2 - 2 hours tops.