The fried rice equivalent: is egg rolls. These items epitomize the concept of Chinese takeout. This recipe for egg rolls is an imitation of the standard fare at Chinese restaurants and takeout counters, featuring a filling of cabbage and roast pork.
It’s been a long time since I helped my parents roll out hundreds of egg rolls at once in their takeout restaurant. However, we have documented the ingredients and process in this recipe so we can recreate it at home whenever we like!
WHAT ARE EGG ROLLS?
Fried savory rolls called “egg rolls” are typically stuffed with chopped Chinese roast pork and cabbage. When fried, the wrappers, made from wheat flour, develop tiny bubbles characteristic of gyoza.
It originated in the United States sometime in the early 20th century, derived from Chinese spring rolls.
The filling is not made with eggs, despite the name, and eggs may or may not be present in the packaging. A common sweet condiment at Chinese American takeout joints is duck sauce, also used to season other fried foods.
ADAPTING AND STORING
This recipe calls for fresh vegetables and meat, but feel free to substitute what you have.
Prepare a large quantity. They reheat nicely for snacks after school or parties and freeze well after frying. You can cut the wrappers into squares if you want to make bite-sized appetizers. No further explanation is necessary.
- 8 cups of savoy cabbage(shredded)
- 8 cups of green cabbage (shredded)
- 2 cups of carrot (shredded)
- 2 cups of celery (shredded)
- 3 scallions (chopped)
- 2 1/2 tsp. of salt
- 2 tsp. of sugar
- 1 tbsp. of sesame oil
- 2 tbsp. of peanut or vegetable oil (plus more for frying)
- 1/4 tsp. of five-spice powder (optional)
- 1/4 tsp. of white pepper
- 3 cups of roast pork (char siu, shredded or diced)
- 2 cups of cooked shrimp (chopped, optional)
- 1 package of egg roll wrappers (about 24 pieces)
- 1 egg (beaten)
- Do this by bringing a large pot of water to a rolling boil. The cabbage, carrots, and celery should be cooked for 2 minutes in boiling water. Soak the vegetables in an ice bath and then drain. Squeeze the vegetables until they are completely dry. If the filling is too wet, the egg rolls will be soggy, and the wrapper will fall apart.
- When they’re dry, put the vegetables in a big bowl. Then, stir in the scallions, salt, sugar, sesame oil, 2 tbsp. of oil, five-spice powder (if using), white pepper, roast pork, and cooked shrimp (if using). Combine all of the components. The filling is ready to be wrapped!
- Egg rolls are wrapped by placing a small fistful of filling on a wrapper and squeezing the filling together in one’s hand. The tactic is very reminiscent of how a burrito is prepared. To ensure a tight seal, simply apply a thin layer of egg. Arrange them in a row on a floured surface and keep going until you’re out of stuff.
- Prepare 325 degrees Fahrenheit of oil in a small saucepan. Only a little, just enough to cover the egg rolls. Put a few egg rolls gently into the oil and cook them for about 5 minutes or until golden brown. To ensure uniform browning, keep stirring the food in the oil.
- Cool slightly and serve! If you have any leftovers, you can put them in freezer bags and reheat them in a 350 degree oven to get them crispy again.