One day I’m going to give away my last super-easy recipe and you Crankies are going to realize that I’m not actually a terribly good cook, just one who’s willing to be adventurous with ingredients.
But I’ll risk coming one step closer to that moment by delivering the promised recipe for Summer Rolls with Edible Flowers that was featured in my Beautiful, Edible Blossoms workshop at Red Wagon Plants.
This is probably my favorite no-cook meal. It feels like you’ve actually made something, but you haven’t worked too hard – and you don’t have to heat anything for it unless you want to. You can decide what to put in them by what’s in your refrigerator – combine a protein (marinated tofu, leftover chicken, etc.) on a bed of something mild (lettuce, bean thread noodles, shredded carrots), a dash of something strongly flavored like fish sauce or umeboshi or tamari, all rolled up in the rice paper wrapper and you’re done. Adding in edible flowers makes them beautiful enough to serve to Fancy Company, should you be in the mood for that.
The recipe below suggests using all pale ingredients for the filling so that the flowers are especially visible, but – as always – you should feel free to make ’em with what you’ve got.
Beautiful Summer Rolls
makes 8 (enough for a snack for 4)
- 8 rice paper wrappers, soaked one at a time for about 15 seconds in cold water, just before you’re ready to make them
- 4 cups bean thread noodles soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and then drained, and cut into smaller pieces
- 1 cup thinly sliced light green lettuce
- 1 cup diced marinated extra firm tofu, seitan, diced cold chicken, or other protein
- 8 leaves cilantro or basil
- ~1 T. fish sauce (or substitute lime juice or umeboshi vinegar or tamari)
- 8 edible flowers (these pictured are with nasturtiums and violas, and if you don’t have access to any you can use some red leaf lettuce or anything brightly colored that you want to see)
- sweet chili sauce, peanut sauce, fish sauce, or one of the traditional sauces on this page for dipping
Make by placing one soaked wrapper in front of you on a plate or cutting board. Place about 1/2 cup noodles and lettuce, basil or cilantro and cubed tofu in a line on the wrapper. Drizzle over just a little bit of fish sauce or whatever you’re using.
Fold one edge over the filling, tucking the filling in so that you can roll tightly. Place the flower to one side of the filling.
Tuck in the other sides, roll the wrapper, which will stick to itself, while using your fingers to compress the filling so it can be rolled fairly neatly. Cover with a damp towel until the others are done, then serve with your preferred dip.