Fresh Summer Rolls With Sweet & Sour Chili Sauce

Summer roll prep
Summer rolls prep

Spring has officially sprung and that means you’re probably hankering a delicious something full of fresh ingredients to make. Whether you get them from a farmer’s market, or a great local store like The Garden or Natural Garden. Below you will find my take on a refreshing and healthy treat, Vietnamese summer rolls. Warning: these contain a lot of ingredients but the amazing taste explosion makes them worth your time!

Summer roll ingredients
Roll filling
1 package extra firm tofu
1-2 carrots
1 cucumber
1/3 cup minced green onions
1/4 cup chopped honey roasted peanuts
fresh basil leaves (to taste)
fresh mint leaves chopped (to taste)
rice wrappers (I got mine at Sunrise Mart)

Tofu marinade 
1/3 cup teriyaki sauce
3 tbsp rice vinegar
1-2 tbsp honey
Sriracha to taste

Sweet & sour chili dipping sauce
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp thai red chili paste
1 tsp lime juice
chopped honey roasted peanuts (to taste)

Step 1: First, marinade your tofu. Cut the tofu into quarter-inch wide strips and put them in a Ziploc freezer bag, tupperware, anything you can cover and stick in the fridge will do. Next mix up the marinade in a bowl and pour over top of the tofu strips making sure they are completely covered. I let mine sit overnight to really soak up the flavors.

Step 2: Bake the tofu on a baking sheet at 350 for about 30 minutes, or until the tofu turns golden brown. Remove from the baking sheet and set aside to cool.

Step 3: Crush up your peanuts by placing them in a Ziploc bag and smashing them with a mallet (or whatever utensil you have on hand) and set aside. I had a large plate to set each ingredient on after I’d finished prepping them. Chop up your carrots, cucumber and green onion. Finely chop your fresh mint leaves. Strip the fresh basil leaves from the stems but keep the leaves whole.

Step 4: Have your rice wrappers and a large bowl of warm (not hot) water ready. To soften the wrappers dip one at a time into the water for a second or two. The wrapper will still be somewhat stiff but will soften after removed from the water. Lay out the wrapper and fill with the cucumber, carrots, green onion, tofu, mint and basil leaves. I really enjoy peanuts so I put a sprinkle or two inside each roll. Then, simply fold up like you would a burrito.

Step 5: For the sweet & sour chili dipping sauce, combine all the rice vinegar, sugar, Thai chili paste and lime juice in a bowl mixing well. Add the rest of the crushed peanuts to the sauce.

Step 6: This recipe yields 8-10 large rolls. Time to eat and enjoy!

Voila, summer rolls!
Voila, summer rolls!

About Evelyn Derico

Evelyn is a writer, webmaster, bookworm and b-movie fan residing in Greenpoint. Follow her on instagram @evio_dorito.

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