Meeting someone for the first time and them finding out that I am Filipino has resulted in these following comments:
- “OMG! I love lumpia! Can you make them?” (Yes!)
- “I’m vegetarian, but I only eat pork when it’s in lumpia form” (OMG!)
- “Where do you get the best lumpia?” (From me!)
And quite possibly the best praise to my lumpia making skills –
- I’m having a huge bbq birthday party, and I know this is too much to ask – but can you please give me your lumpia as a birthday present?
I usually don’t make lumpia, because quite frankly, it is tedious to make. I used to be scared of making these because I wouldn’t know if the meat inside is cooked, but I’ve learned that the secret is to cut them small before frying!
- Ground Pork, about 1lb
- Carrot, cut into tiny pieces in your food chopper
- Spring onions, one bunch, sliced into small pieces
- Garlic – an entire head, minced in the food chopper
- Onions, minced in the chopper
- 1 egg
- Cornstarch, about 1 tablespoon (Flour or Rice Flour will also work. It’s just a binding agent)
- Soy Sauce, about 2 tablespoons
- A pinch of salt and pepper “to taste” – to which, dont taste! A couple of shakes will do.
- Vietnamese Spring Roll Wrappers – Freeze them, then defrost them before rolling. Usually found in the freezer section of Asian Markets (see Amazon link below)
- Thai Sweet Chili Sauce – This is quite possibly, my crack. This is ranks higher than Sriracha in my books. (see Amazon link below)
- Cooking oil for deep frying
- 2-3 quart size saucepan for deep frying
- Sieve to let the lumpia drip excess oil
- Kitchen shears/scissors
- In a large bowl combine everything. Ground pork, carrots, spring onions, garlic, onions, egg, conrstarch, 1 egg. Massage with your hands.
- Heat up a small saucepan half filled with cooking oil.
- In a dry surface, peel off one spring roll wrapper, and arrange about the size of a fat pen from one end, then roll. Seal the edges with water.
- After rolling 4-5 pieces, cut into 5 pieces. Fry in oil. While it’s frying, keep rolling. Repeat. Don’t be lazy. Cut it into 5, because it cooks all the way through and faster this way in comparison to frying it in longer pieces or whole. And it will fit better in your small saucepan for deep frying.
- You’ll know it’s cooked when it’s a bit “burned looking at the ends.” It should be a bit golden, but not too brown. You’ll have to develop a feel for this, so you know it’s cooked through.
- Once cooked, drain on a sieve / rack. You want the collect the excess oil so you can put it back in the pot (smart!) and also crunchify the rolls. The crunchy comes after it gets “aired” and cools down. You want the lumpia to be aired out.
- Once completely drained off and cooled, dip in Thai chili sweet sauce and devour.
- Maybe you’ll have excess pork mixture after finishing all the wrappers – don’t fret! You can either roll them into small meatballs. Make a small ball, roll around cornstarch and keep frying!
- Freeze the extra meat for future use. This can be a good addition to an omelette, or stir-fry with your choice of veggies.
- Extra wrappers? You can freeze them for future use, or wrap some hard cheeses (make sure to seal the edges) then deep fry! Fried cheese sticks are awesome!
Lumpia can be served as an appetizer, or have it with rice for dinner.