Appetizers & Snacks

Banana heart spring rolls

Most vegetable dishes are best consumed within a few hours after cooking as the vegetables turn soggy when reheated. One of the few exceptions I know of is laing because the gabi (taro) leaves are cooked to a mush so they are already soggy even when newly cooked. But the common sautéed vegetable dishes…?? One thing I’ve learned over the years is that sautéed vegetables are great filling for fried spring rolls.

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Take, for instance, ginataang puso ng saging (banana heart with coconut milk). The next day, the pork and sliced banana heart have soaked up much of the coconut milk. Drain the excess liquid and you got yourself an instant spring roll filling. Wrap it up, fry until golden and you’ll be amazed why you never thought of using coconut-milk drenched vegetables for spring roll filling before.

Not that the idea is new. I saw something on television a long time ago where the chef in a Vietnamese restaurant marinated chunks of fish in spices and coconut milk, wrapped them in rice paper — spring roll style — then deep fried them. I thought it was pure genius. And that was what inspired me to try and make spring rolls out of leftover banana heart in coconut milk.

There is no recipe here, strictly speaking, as everything begins with the presumption that you have already cooked a pot of banana heart in coconut milk. If you haven’t but would still like to try these spring rolls, you can cook the filling (click here for the recipe), cool it then drain it. Get your spring roll wrappers, separate them and fill them up (step-by-step guide on wrapping spring rolls). Then, deep fry the spring rolls and drain them on paper towels.

I wouldn’t recommend any dipping sauce for these spring rolls as they are already very rich and tasty since the filling has been well-seasoned. You can serve them as a main dish, with rice, or as a snack or appetizer.

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