Growing up, a friend’s family ran a Chinese restaurant.
Since the family immigrated when their children were small, their mom/grandmother never was able to learn to speak English. She was still too feisty to want to feel like a burden, though. Ergo, the grandmother/s job in the restaurant was to make the egg rolls.
Just because she never spoke English didn’t mean she didn’t welcome every opportunity for loving on all of us. For many of my friends, one of our fondest memories is of catching her eye through the kitchen door.
While no one is every going to make egg rolls that compare to Grandmother Wong’s, we had to learn to make do after we left home. They were so different in each restaurant in the city. One place made them with bean sprouts, one place made the most incredible ones that were meat only.
(Can you believe that there are places in North America where egg rolls are not a staple at every Chinese restaurant? I can’t imagine how tragic that is.)
As I got older, egg rolls became more of a guilty pleasure. They taste amazing but they’re deep fried, and the crust just seems to absorb so much oil.
So how does one get the taste without all the guilt? These quick and easy egg rolls in a bowl, from The Seasoned Mom are an excellent compromise.
1 pound ground meat (pork, beef, turkey or chicken)
1 sweet onion, diced
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon Rice Vinegar
2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
16 ounce bag coleslaw mix
1/2 cup grated or matchstick carrots
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon Hoisin sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Brown meat in a large skillets. Drain fat and return meat to pan
Add onion, sesame oil, and vinegar to meat and cook until onion is tender. Stir frequently
Add garlic, ginger, soy sauce, hoisin, coleslaw mix and carrots to pan and toss to combine
Cook, stirring frequently, for 5-7 minutes.
Remove from heat and add green onions, salt and pepper if necessary. Serve.