These plump little spring rolls make an ideal picnic lunch when nestled in an airtight container with an assortment of dipping sauces (peanut is my favorite). Feel free to try these with grilled salmon, beef, pork, shrimp, tofu, or tempeh-they'll take on just about any protein source.
Also, if you're feeling too lazy to make the chicken yourself, the frozen grilled chicken from Trader Joe's or even some shredded, store-bought rotisserie chicken will do just fine.
1/4 cup soy sauce pantry
3 tablespoons brown sugar pantry
few grinds of black pepper pantry
2 garlic cloves, minced pantry
1 small (1" piece) ginger, peeled and minced (about 1 tablespoon) 50 cents
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs $3
2 teaspoons vegetable oil pantry
10 8" Vietnamese rice paper spring roll wrappers $1.50 for 20
1 handful fresh mint $1 for a bunch
1 ripe avocado, peeled and sliced $1.50
2 carrots, shredded 50 cents
1/4 red onion, sliced very thinly 50 cents?? for a whole onion
Whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, pepper, garlic, and ginger. Place into a large bowl. Add the chicken thighs and mix well to cover. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes or up to two hours. Heat the vegetable oil in a large, heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken thighs with their sauce for four to five minutes on each side, until cooked through and browned on the outside. The sauce should thicken and form a glaze. Remove the cooked chicken from the pan and transfer it to a clean plate to cool. Once the chicken has cooled, use two forks to shred it into long, thin pieces. Gently wet a spring roll wrapper under a faucet or in a bowl of water. Remove carefully and blot lightly on a dish towel. Lay on a clean, flat, dry surface and allow to soften-about 30 seconds. As the wrapper softens, arrange the ingredients in the center in the following order: two mint leaves, topped with a few shreds of chicken, topped with a slice of avocado, topped with a few pinches of shredded carrots and a few slices of red onion. Roll up the wrappers very gently, tucking in the ends, being careful not to break the wrapper. Don't worry if they break-it can take some practice, and broken spring rolls are still delicious. Serve the rolls cut on the bias with sweet chili sauce or peanut sauce for dipping.
Serves 2 as an entree, 4-6 as an appetizer.