Tofu Spring Rolls with Avocado Sriracha Sauce

In case you didn’t pick it up from my profile photo, I happen to be of Asian descent. My family originated from China, but my parents and grandparents spent a good portion of their lives in Vietnam, so I grew up with influences from both cultures. Besides all my fancy baby clothes from Chinatown, I also lucked out in the cuisine department and have tried so many different Chinese-Vietnamese fusion foods.

baby pic

One of my all-time favorite dishes is spring rolls, which are eaten in a few different Asian countries. Now that I have gone flexi-vegan,  spring rolls have also been a handy part of my food arsenal because they can be easily customized to fit any dietary preference. I also love that you can use whatever ingredients you have on hand. I usually keep a stack of rice paper rolls and some noodles on hand and make these whenever I have vegetables I need to use up.20150315_173240

Here’s the breakdown of the basic spring roll:

Ingredients:

  • Rice paper rolls (Asian or ethnic food section of grocery store. Around $4 for a pack of 40 or 50)20150315_163817
  • Cooked noodles: rice noodles are most common. I used Japanese soba noodles. Spaghetti also works. About two cups is enough for 10-15 rolls, depending on how much you put in each roll.
  • Green vegetables or herbs: Great for added nutrition and makes the dish more filling. My mom uses mint and basil. I used a spring mix of spinach because that’s what was in my fridge.
  • Protein: I used tofu as my vegan option. I marinated mine (recipe below) and kept it raw, but bake or stir-fry yours if you want more texture.
  • Just for kicks: sliced avocado (surprise!)
  • Optional add-ins: carrots, cilantro, green onions, crushed peanuts or cashews, red peppers.
  • Sauce: I made an avocado sriracha sauce (recipe below), but any combo of hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sririacha, sesame oil, or peanut butter will pair well. I also like adding crushed nuts for some crunch.

20150315_163717

Recipe: Marinated Tofu

Ingredients:

  • 1 block of firm or extra firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha or Asian chili paste
  • 1 tablespoon agave or honey
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil

Directions:

  1. Drain and cube tofu.
  2. Mix remaining ingredients and pour over tofu. Let sit for 30 minutes.
  3. Use raw, or stir-fry until golden, or bake in over for 15 minutes at 350 degrees for a crisp texture.

Now, for the sauce. I balanced out spicy sriracha sauce using avocados.

Creamy avocado balances out the spicy sriracha sauce.

Recipe: Avocado Sriracha Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 avocado, mashed
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha sauce, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon of hoisin or soy sauce
  • Sesame seeds or crushed nuts for serving

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients together. Season with salt to taste. Thin with water to desired consistency.

Instructions for assembly:

Assemble all your ingredients together, plus  a dish of water and a plate for rollingAssemble all your ingredients together, plus  a dish of water and a plate for rolling

I used a cake pan for the water since it was roughly the same size as the rice paper.

Submerge a rice paper sheet in water for about 30 seconds, or until the sheet is soft, pliable, and slightly sticky.

Lay sheet on plate (it looks invisible here). Fill with noodles, tofu, greens, etc. Leave an inch of space at the bottom and on the sides for rolling.

Roll bottom of sheet over filling. Roll once to secure edge, or tuck edge underneath filling.

Fold in sides of sheet towards center, then finish rolling.

It takes some practice, but after a few tries, you will be able to make a pretty stack like this.

20150315_180453Celebrate your hour of labor and serve rolls with sauce of choice.

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