Summer Meals | The Common Creative: Summer Meals

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Summer Meals

I'm longing for summer weather. There have been too many rainy days and chilly mornings for it to really be June! To make things a little easier, we've been getting into Summer meals. We can't eat them all on the patio yet, unfortunately. But we are barbecuing, farmers market shopping, and plant watering in order to make the summer come eventually!

I tried making a recipe based on these Rainbow Spring Roll recipe I found. Full of colourful veggies, fresh herbs, wrapped in rice paper wrappers, and dipped in a sweet and sour sauce, they are so light, summery and delicious!

I think the first time I saw rice paper wrappers in all their beautiful glory (other than a restaurant setting) was the summer me and Jenni lived together. I had just recently started cooking for myself, and Jenni made something similar to this recipe and stored them in our shared fridge. I was a bit impressed by her culinary skills, I'll admit. The rice papers looked so delicate and thin! Little did I know they would be so easy to use...and really quite durable. Oh well. Jenni, you impressed me!

I adapted the recipe a tad. Here's my version.

3/4 red pepper, cut into thin strips
1 carrot, cut into thin strips
shredded cabbage
spinach cut into strips
1 tsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp fresh basil, chopped
6 rice paper wrappers

Place about 3-4 Tbsp of this mixture in each rice wrapper, soaking the rice wrapper 15 seconds in warm water before filling.

I absolutely loved the sauce for these bundles of goodness. The base for it was originally oolong tea. I used a ginger jasmine tea, and it was fantastic. Here's my version:

1/3 cup of orange juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 cup strongly steeped ginger tea
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tsp gluten free soy sauce
few drops sesame oil
pinch red pepper flakes
1 tbsp corn starch

Bring everything but 1/4 cup of tea and cornstarch to a boil. Add cornstarch to reserved tea and make a slurry, add to boiling mixture and reduce heat until it becomes a thick glaze. 

We added a little prosciutto wrapped asparagus on the side, cause it's just so good!

What are some ideas for light summer meals that you have in your repertoire?


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