How to Make Vietnamese Summer Rolls (Gỏi cuốn)

Vietnamese Summer Rolls: easy, quick, delicious, AND HEALTHY!
I promise you won’t feel like you’re eating rabbit food!

hu

Now, I’ve grown up calling these things “spring rolls” or “Gỏi cuốn,”  but I’ve noticed that a lot of Vietnamese restaurants are now calling these “Summer Rolls.”  I’m not quite sure of the difference (neither is Wikipedia), but I do know that whatever you want to call them, they are delicious.  Which may be a little surprising because all of the ingredients are boiled with very little seasoning (simple salt and pepper)–however–having the perfect peanut dipping sauce is also key to this refreshing delicacy.  As you might know by now, I’m a fan of spicy, so I did add some heat to my peanut sauce, but as always, you can omit to your preference.200-1

This recipe can also be used as a fun way to have the whole family involved with dinner–just delegate your assembly line and you’ll have spring rolls in no time!

Anyway–enough blabbering and more cooking, right?
Watch me prep, cook, and serve my Vietnamese Spring Rolls/Summer Rolls/Gỏi Cuốn here:

Difficulty: Easy
Cost: $
Time: 20 Minutes

Ingredients:
1 package rice paper
1 package rice noodles (also known as vermicelli)
~1.5-2 lbs pork tenderloin
~1 lb boiled shrimp
1 head of lettuce
Salt & Pepper to taste

Peanut Dipping Sauce:
Hoisin Sauce
Lime
Chunky Peanut Butter
Chili Sauce (also known as chili paste)
Sriracha (optional)
Easy, right??  Stay tuned/subscribe for my next video: VEGETARIAN SPRING ROLLS!

200-2

The BEST Guacamole Recipe EVER! (Plus homemade, oven-baked tortilla chips AND tips on how to prevent your guacamole from turning brown!)

guac icon

Whether scooped up with an army of tortilla chips or generously added to tacos, nachos, burritos, sandwiches (did I miss anything?), there’s no denying that guacamole is awesome.  And boy do I have the most amazing guacamole recipe everrrrr.

One and Only Guacamole

After many kitchen trials and errors, I came up with the perfect, fail-proof guacamole recipe.  If you can’t tell by now, I’m also a fan of spice, so the recipe I’m sharing does have a little kick to it, but for those of you that aren’t too fond of heat, you can omit the added spice.  I’m also sharing my recipe for homemade, oven-baked, corn tortilla chips.  So incredibly easy, and on the healthier side because they are baked in the oven instead of deep fried.  I honestly think these chips taste better than any store bought tortilla chips.  And I don’t feel as guilty eating them (which is important, right?)  🙂

Watch me prep, cook, and serve my all-time best guacamole recipe AND homemade tortilla chips here:

Difficulty: Easy
Cost: $
Time: 20 Minutes

Ingredients:
Guacamole:
2 Haas Avocados
1 Roma Tomato
1 Shallot
1 Lime
1/2 Jalapeno
Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Tortilla Chips:
Corn Tortillas (4 corn tortillas makes about 32 chips)
Olive Oil
Salt (preferably sea salt..just because I think the big salt crystals look fancier)

Instructions:
Prep:
Homemade Corn Tortilla Chips:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees
  • Lightly brush the corn tortillas with olive oil
  • Cut the tortillas into nice triangles
    • one corn tortilla should yield about 8 triangles
  • Place the tortilla slices onto a baking rack
    • highly recommend investing in a baking rack because this will allow the chips to evenly crisp up on each side without you having to flip them over halfway through cooking time
    • you can purchase the one I used here: http://amzn.to/1Lc5QYb
  • Sprinkle the chips with as much or as little sea salt you’d like

Guacamole:

  • Cut the avocados in half and scoop out into a mason jar
    • This recipe will usually fit into a pint-size mason jar
      • The reason why I’m using a mason jar: airtight jar = guacamole that stays green!  I don’t know why it took me so long to figure that one out lol.
  • Dice up the roma tomato
  • Dice up half of the jalapeno
  • Cut up the shallot
  • Add all of the above ingredients into the mason jar
  • Slice the lime in half and squeeze the lime juice into the jar
    • The acidity from the lime juice will also help to keep the guacamole green
  • Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper to the mix

“Cook”
Homemade Corn Tortilla Chips:

  • Place the tortilla chips into your pre-heated oven
  • Bake the tortilla chips for about 10-12 minutes
    • they’ll be ready when they turn a nice, crispy, gold color

Guacamole:

  • Mash all of the ingredients in the mason jar together

Eat

  • Chip+Dip+Eat

Oh man do I want some guacamole right now!!! Gah.

want

How to Make Crispy, Juicy Pan Fried Chicken Wings

chicken wings thumbnail

Ah.  The chicken wing.  A finger food favorite.

Thumbs Up Chicken Wing

Whether smothered in sauce, or served extra crispy, I’m always up for a good chicken wing.Ron Weasley Chicken

After years of being convinced that I could never make the perfect, crispy, chicken wing at home, I decided it was time to give it a try.  Well, really, I was forced in giving it a try when I couldn’t get a damn chicken wing anywhere during Superbowl XILX (go pats!).  It was like every single person in Boston pre-ordered their wings a year in advance and was doing the Superbowl right except for me.  Rough times man.  So, I ran over to the supermarket and managed to grab the two last packs of wings to get this party started.

While I LOVE a good, saucy chicken wing, I wanted to try something different (also just wanted to stay away from ladling my chicken wings in a sauce made of 80% butter–sorry Paula).  That’s when I decided I wanted to make a dry, spiced rubbed chicken wing.  Perfectly crispy on the outside and ridiculously juicy in the inside.

Bart Drooling

You can watch prep, cook, and serve my spice rubbed chicken wings here:

Difficulty: Easy
Cost: $
Time: 20 Minutes

Ingredients:
2 lbs chicken wings (party wings separated at the joint)
1-2 tbsp Cumin
1-2 tbsp Chili Powder
1-2 tbsp Cayenne
1-2 tbsp Smoked Paprika
Salt and Pepper (to taste)

Instructions:

Prep

  • Place your chicken wings into a large mixing bowl
  • Sprinkle in the spices spices (you can add more or less depending on your love of heat)
    • 1-2 tbsp Cumin
    • 1-2 tbsp Chili Powder
    • 1-2 tbsp Cayenne
    • 1-2 tbsp Smoked Paprika
    • Salt and Pepper (to taste)
  • Mix the chicken and the spices together to get an even coating on every wing

Cook

  • Bring a large-sized pan to medium heat on the stove (non-stick if you have it)
  • Add in about 1/2 a cup of canola oil
    • Give that about a minute or two to heat up
  • Add the chicken wings one by one (as to not overcrowd the pan, which causes the food to boil instead of fry!)
  • Let the chicken cook for about 5 minutes on each side
  • When the chicken has finished frying, place the wings on a baking rack to let the excess fat drip off
    • A lot of people tend to place freshly fried food on top of paper towels or paper bags to try to drain off excess fat, but what they’re really doing is just allowing the food to sit in its own fat and get soggy 😦 that’s why I prefer using a baking rack instead.

Eat

  • Once the chicken is done, serve with your desired dipping sauces
    • tip: these wings go great with guacamole!

What do you think?  Are you more of a sauce or dry rub person?  Let me know!  I’m working on a couple of sauce recipes as well that I’ll be sure to share with you guys soon! 🙂