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Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Crispy Tofu

INGREDIENTS Spring Rolls 1/2 cup each julienned carrots, red pepper and cucumber 1 bunch fresh cilantro 1 bunch fresh mint 4 ounces vermicelli or rice noodles (the thinner the better) 8-10 Rice Spring Roll Papers Almond Butter Dipping Sauce 1/3 cup salted creamy almond butter 1 Tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce (GF if gluten free) 1-2 Tbsp brown sugar, agave or honey if not vegan 1 Tbsp fresh lime juice 1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce Hot water to thin Crispy Tofu 8 ounces extra firm tofu, drained and thoroughly dried/pressed 4 Tbsp sesame oil, divided 3 Tbsp cornstarch 2.5 Tbsp almond butter dipping sauce 1 Tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce 1 Tbsp brown sugar or agave nectar INSTRUCTIONS Start by preparing rice noodles in boiling hot water for about 10 minutes (read instructions on package), then drain and set aside. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat and cut pressed tofu into small rectangles. Toss in 3 Tbsp cornstarch and flash fry in ~3 Tbsp sesame oil, flipping on all sides to ensure even browning – about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside. Prep veggies and prepare almond butter sauce by adding all sauce ingredients except water to a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Add enough hot water to thin until a pourable sauce is achieved. Adjust flavors as needed (I often add a little more chili garlic sauce and brown sugar). To add more flavor to the tofu, transfer ~2.5 Tbsp of the sauce to a small bowl and add an additional Tablespoon each of soy sauce, sesame oil and brown sugar (or agave) and whisk to combine. Add tofu back to the skillet over medium heat and add “sauce/glaze,” stirring to coat. Cook for several minutes or until all of the sauce is absorbed and the tofu looks glazed, stirring frequently (see photos). Set aside with prepared veggies and vermicelli noodles. To assemble spring rolls, pour very hot water into a shallow dish or skillet and immerse rice paper to soften for about 10-15 seconds. Transfer to a damp cutting board or damp towel and gently spread out edges into a circle. It may take a little practice, so don’t feel bad if your first few attempts are a fail! To the bottom third of the wrapper add a small handful of vermicelli noodles and layer carrots, bell peppers, cucumber, fresh herbs and 2-3 pieces of tofu on top (see photo). Gently fold over once, tuck in edges, and continue rolling until seam is sealed. Place seam-side down on a serving platter and cover with damp warm towel to keep fresh. Repeat until all fillings are used up – about 8-10 spring rolls total. Serve with almond butter sauce and sriracha or hot sauce of choice. I like to mix mine and go dip happy. Leftovers store well individually wrapped in plastic wrap, though best when fresh.
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great work on the photographs
one of my fav food on earth. I love this kind of rolls. thank you for sharing this recipe:)
yum! I love when my fam sits downnon the saat and we all makenit together~
Yum! I've actually never tried tofu "crispy" before--does it take on the sesame flavor a lot?
That crispy tofu looks sooo good!
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Finally, blanch in boiling water and remove to cool.  Step 2: Processing pork belly Bacon is only washed, cut into small pieces, put in the pan, slightly browned. Then pour the meat into the prepared shrimp, season with ½ teaspoon of pepper, ½ teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of fish sauce and leave for 5-7 minutes to infuse the spices.  Step 3: Make Thanh Hoa shrimp paste The standard recipe for Thanh Hoa shrimp paste is to pound the meat and shrimp in a stone mortar until they blend together into a beautiful pink color. Although it takes a bit of time, pounding the rolls by hand will help retain the sweetness of the meat and shrimp and when you eat, you will still feel the full flavor than putting it in the blender. If you don't have time, you can still put the meat and shrimp in the blender, but don't grind too much or the meat will be crushed.(Photo: Collected) Step 4: Prepare fresh gac fruit Soak fresh gac with white glutinous rice wine for 3-5 minutes to slightly peel off the outer membrane, then remove the seeds, keeping the flesh. Mix half a teaspoon of sugar, add water to the gac, then grind or pound it and then mix the gac with the shrimp meat above to create a beautiful red color.  Step 5: Stir fried shrimp paste The next step in how to make Thanh Hoa shrimp cakes is to stir-fry the shrimp paste. You peel the onion, garlic, chili, mince it and put it on the pan to fry it, then pour the mixed shrimp meat and gac into the island.  At this point, you add 1 teaspoon of fish sauce, 1 teaspoon of seasoning, 1 teaspoon of pepper and stir until the meat is cooked, infuse the spices and then let it out.  Step 6: Roll cha This is the final step in making Thanh Hoa shrimp paste. You cut pho into small rectangular pieces about the palm of your hand, add the cooked fried filling and roll it into small spring rolls.  When rolling, you should try to make sure your hands are tight so that when baking the filling does not come out.(Photo: Collected) You can grill each one directly or clip it to a bamboo stick to bake several at a time. When you see that the outer shell is golden, crispy, slightly burnt with a fragrant aroma, then the shrimp paste is cooked and can be enjoyed immediately.  Step 7: How to make the right shrimp paste dipping sauce Thanh Hoa shrimp cakes are delicious thanks to the sweet and sour sauce served, this can be considered the "soul" of the dish. To make the right dipping sauce, you just need to mix 3 tablespoons of fish sauce with 2 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons of MSG, 1 tablespoon of pepper, 1 tablespoon of vinegar, 1 pinch of chili and minced garlic, add the squeezed papaya. Add salt then stir well. Thanh Hoa shrimp paste is delicious and crispy, combined with sweet and sour dipping sauce and raw vegetables, you will never get bored.(Photo: Channel 14) 2.3. How to enjoy Thanh's shrimp paste The best way to enjoy Thanh Hoa shrimp paste is when it has just been grilled, still hot and the outer shell is still golden and crispy. You can eat it to feel the full taste of the meat, the sweetness of the shrimp or the most popular way to eat it is to roll it with raw vegetables, rice paper, dipped in sweet and sour fish sauce. Another way of eating you can also try is to eat it with vermicelli to make Thanh Hoa shrimp vermicelli that is both delicious and strange.(Photo: Lao Dong Newspaper)  Shrimp fried rice is a delicious Thanh Hoa dish that you can enjoy at any time, but the best is when the weather is a bit chilly, sitting around the charcoal grill will double the deliciousness.