My son and I have a little bit of a cold this week, so for dinner I decided to make one of the dishes that would always make me feel better when we lived in LA. Out there, you can order take-out from any kind of restaurant you could ever dream of at any time of night or day, so I became very spoiled…
Tom Ka Gai is my favorite thing to order at a Thai restaurant. It’s essentially a chicken soup with a coconut milk base, flavored with lemon grass, kefir lime leaves and cilantro. It’s utterly delicious and extremely soothing. But when we moved away from the big city I had to figure out how to make it at home using stuff that I always have on hand, (it’s not every day I see kefir lime leaves at my local North Carolina grocery store). And since I like to have something more substantial on the side when I eat soup, I decided to go in a different Asian direction and make baked spring rolls. (I’m not a big fried food fan and am always trying to make baked versions of fried classics at home.)
So when this nasty cold started to rear its ugly head, I set out to make the world’s easiest Tom Ka Gai and the world’s healthiest Spring Rolls.
**Baked Sesame Spring Rolls
-1/2 large cabbage, finely shredded.
-2 large carrots, peeled and shredded.
-3 green onions, minced.
-2 in piece of fresh ginger root, grated.
-several good glugs of oyster sauce.
-several good splashes of low sodium soy sauce.
-several good splashes of seasoned rice wine vinegar.
-a good splash of toasted sesame oil
-a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
-2 TB of sugar
Saute the veggies and ginger in a little olive oil until they begin to brown. Add everything else and stir. Check for seasoning. Allow the mixture to cool and place about 2 TB of the mix in the center of a egg roll wrapper and roll according to package directions. Place, seam-side down on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and brush with an egg wash. Bake at 375* for 20 mins or until golden brown and crispy*.
Serve with a dipping sauce of equal parts ketchup and orange marmalade and a splash or so of seasoned rice wine vinegar.
(*note- these end up being a little less crispy and thick-skinned than the fried ones are, but they’re still delicious.)
**Easy Tom Ka Gai
-Pour equal amounts of coconut milk and chicken stock into a stockpot.
-Peel 1 lime and put the peel pieces into the pot, reserve the lime for later.
-Place a 1 inch piece of fresh ginger root into the pot.
-Put a glug of Fish Sauce into the pot.
-Put ~2 TB of sugar into the pot.
-Put a handful of fresh cilantro into the pot.
-Cut up 2-3 green onions and put into the pot.
-Dice 2-3 raw chicken breasts and put into the pot.
-Bring the mixture to a simmer and when the chicken is fully cooked…
-Empty the contents of 1 can of Asian Straw Mushrooms into the pot.
-Check for seasoning. It should taste equally sweet, sour and savory. And reeaaallly good.
-Serve in shallow bowls and garnish with lime wedges, more cilantro and green onions.