"In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer."- Albert Camus
I've come to a painful realization: my transformation from thick-skinned Yankee to warm-blooded Southerner is complete. There was a time - in a galaxy far, far away - that I used to relish the cold weather. Who needs a parka!?! I'm from Chicago, pansy boy.
Those days, friends, are officially over. I sit at my desk - shivering unless the heat is turned up to 70 - staring at photos from the previous June of my blue toenails in my favorite sandals. Daydreaming of drinking wine on a patio somewhere with my partners in crime. Hell, I'm even looking forward to running the Peachtree Road Race on July 4th if it means I don't have to run when its TWENTY degrees out.
I've also been craving lighter food. I think its my lust for warmer weather mixed with trying to eat healthier, in general. Half of my meals since the beginning of the year have included sushi or Asian food of some variety. I dreamed up these summer rolls lying in bed wearing socks, jammies, a hat, and two cats on either side of me for insulation. The flavor combo is dynamite - I may be ruined for summer rolls any other way now. I do encourage you, however, to make up your own recipe and sit back and dream of warm, streaming sunshine.
Smoked Salmon Summer Rolls - makes 6
For the spring rolls:
- 1 4 ounce package of smoked salmon
- 6 rice paper summer roll wrappers
- 1 ripe avocado
- 1 bunch watercress, washed and dried
- 1/2 red onion, cut into thin slices
- cilantro sprouts, to taste (regular cilantro would be just fine here, too)
- 1/3 cup creme fraiche
- prepared wasabi, to taste
For dipping sauce: sweet chili dipping sauce diluted with rice wine vinegar - a 70/30 mixture or to taste.
- In a small bowl, combine creme fraiche and wasabi until completely blended through. I put mine in a squeeze bottle for easy saucing, but if you want to just spread it thats fine, too. Set aside.
- In a shallow baking dish, fill with enough warm water to submerge wrappers. Hydrate wrappers one at a time and, once pliable, lay on a piece of paper towel and press excess water off with another layer of paper town.
- Dividing the smoked salmon into 6 equal portions, lay it down on the wrapper. Top with other ingredients to your liking. Squeeze wasabi creme fraiche on top and quickly roll it up. Take the ends and fold them in and then roll one side over the ingredients and continue rolling until its tightly bound up - this motion was very much the same was making sushi.
- To serve, cut each roll on the diagonal into two pieces. Summer rolls may be made up to 6 hours ahead and chilled, wrapped in dampened paper towels in a sealed plastic bag. Bring rolls to room temperature before halving and serving.
***Editors Note: You're not imagining things. My font size is all jacked up. Typepad is being a pain in the !$@ and I'll try to fix it later ***