Wanpen’s Egg Rolls

A friend named, Wanpen, from Thailand gave me this recipe over 20 years ago. The amounts of the ingredients are estimates, because I guesstimated while she showed me how to make them in my kitchen one afternoon.

2 packages ground beef (approx. 3 lbs)
2-3 large carrots, peeled and grated
1 large onion
2 packages of bean sprouts (not sure exact size – let’s say approx. 8 oz bags)
1 large head of cabbage, grated (or use 2 large bags of cabbage for coleslaw)
MSG definitely optional, but it really does enhance the flavor
2 T soy sauce
2 T sugar
spring roll wrappers (50)

Thoroughly mix all ingredients, except spring roll wrappers. For instruction on how to roll up egg rolls, here is a link with pictures that clearly show how (here). Use approx 2 tablespoons of mixture per egg roll and line up your wrapped egg rolls on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. If you stack more than one layer high, put another piece of parchment paper between the layers. Heat about 1 1/2 inches of vegetable oil or peanut oil in a large deep frying pan and begin frying until golden brown on all sides. Do not overcrowd the frying pan. Drain on lots of paper towels. This recipe makes about 50 egg rolls. Once cool, freeze extras by individually wrapping tightly in aluminum foil. Egg rolls may be taken out of foil and placed on a plate lined paper towels and heated in the microwave. Do not thaw first – just place frozen into the microwave and heat like you would a frozen burrito. High power a minute or two. They can also be reheated on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet in the oven – try 375 degrees like you would for frozen french fries and watch closely so they don’t get too brown. Drizzle on more soy sauce as you eat.

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