Spring Rolls NOT FRIED!

Whenever Mr. Gaunt and I go to Pho, we always get the Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce. they are really fresh and yummy. Not that a deep-fried spring roll isnt yummy every now and then, these ones are just so guilt free.

I have been wanting to try to make them for a long time, but could never find the right wrappers. I could always find the kind you fry, but not the fresh ones. Last week I was at Whole Foods looking at the Asian Noodles, and there they were! I guess I assumed they would be in the refrigerator section like the frying kind. They aren’t, they are dried on the shelf in the asian aisle.

A few days later Mr. Gaunt and I walked (yup we walked 3+ miles 3 times this week!) to Whole Foods and got some veggies to make these rolls. I didnt really have a specific recipe, but a number of them said to use the following:

-Cucumber

-Cilantro

-Carrots

-Sprouts (that we got in our Door to Door Organics box)

-Cabage

-Shrimp (optional if you are doing Vegan or Vegetarian version)

Off on our walk

Wearing my new "Habitualize Kale" shirt! So bad ass!

Things are blooming and all the streets smell like cherry blossoms.

My new produce bags that I purchased on Etsy. Awesome!

I definitely wouldn’t say these are easy or fast. Theres a lot of prep work, and a lot of mess because you cut everything into tiny match sticks. You have to thaw shrimp and you dip the rice paper wrap in water to make it soft. I think these are well worth paying for. Still kind of fun to make.

All the veggies prepped and ready to go.

Rice paper ready to soak and get soft.

Ready to Wrap

The wrapping was the hardest part. I imagine its like learning to swaddle a baby, the first time you do it its all messy and not tight. I struggled to not tear or tangle the rice paper. In the end a few were ok looking, but most of them were saggy and wrinkled. Oh well. Also we didn’t do peanut sauce, so we just dipped it in Hoisin Sauce that we already had on hand.

Making Reusable Snack Bags

I posted a while ago about trying to reduce how many grocery bags, plastic bags, foil, etc and some option for purchasing reusable snack bags.  I actually did buy these reusable produce shopping bags last week, I cant wait to get them! Anyways I told myself I could make my own sandwich/snack bags, and today with a little extra spare time I actually went to Joann’s to get supplies.

I asked the woman at Joann’s what I should use to line the inside of my bags to make them washable, or at least wipe-down-able. She suggested either buying sheet plastic (that you can sew) or THE BEST THING EVER Iron on Vinyl! It’s perfect! Makes sewing so easy!

There are a number of tutorials that you can follow to make them, just google Reusable Snack Bag Tutorial and pick one…lol! I on the other hand am annoyed by following a tutorial. I hate all the pinning and measuring and what nots. I’m a lazy sewer…lol! SO I just sort of made up my own way. I bought zippers to use, but after watching a few you tube videos about zippers, I went to Velcro. Yup lazy.

Here is how I made mine:

STEP ONE: Take a large enough piece of fabric to make both sides of your snack bag (measure a regular ziplock bag + 1/4 inch if you want something to go off of) then cut your vinyl the same size and iron it on the backside of your fabric (per package instructions).

STEP TWO: After the entire back of the fabric is vinyl, cut two squares. One should be about an 1 1/2″ longer than the other (for your fold over flap. Fold over all the edges a little bit and iron them down (note iron them with the vinyl facing downward so you don’t melt the vinyl onto the iron).

STEP THREE: Sew all the ironed down edges on both squares.

STEP FOUR: Measure your velcro to the length of the opening of your bag. Line up your two squares and fold over your flap to place the velcro properly.

STEP FIVE: Sew on one side of your vinyl to the flap, and one side onto the front of the bag.

STEP SIX: Line each square up again and verify that your flap and velcro line up. Pin around the edges.

STEP SEVEN: Sew all three edges.

DONE!

I haven’t washed in yet in the washing machine, but the Vinyl says it can be machine washed and line dried.  I will attempt this later today. You can turn it inside out and wipe it down with a sponge. They can also be ironed.

If you size it right it should fit a whole sandwich, and snacks like almonds and trail mix. I’m gonna make a bunch of these with all the extra fabric scraps I have. Very pleasing.