Chinese egg rolls are also known as spring rolls (春卷). Egg rolls are a very popular snack and appetizer in not just China and Taiwan but all over the world. Egg rolls/spring rolls are also one of my favorite appetizers and even though I’m not a vegetarian, and my husband is definitely not a vegetarian, we both love the vegetarian versions of egg rolls / spring rolls.
Egg rolls / spring rolls come in different kinds of sizes and with all kinds of different fillings. Both factors really depend on where you live. For example, Chinese and Taiwanese people like their rolls quite small but if you order an egg roll in a Chinese restaurant in the US, you might be quite shocked when you see the size of the rolls they sell.
An interesting fact about egg rolls, they are one of the dishes served in the Manchu Han Imperial Feast.
Traditionally, Taiwanese people serve spring rolls during the New Year and Spring Staff party (Weiya 尾牙) in the companies they work for to celebrate the start of the new year. A popular way of eating spring rolls is to take a spring roll wrapper, wrap some cooked fillings but don’t deep-fry it like you would see in a restaurant or take-away in the West.
Below are a couple recipes to make egg roll wrappers. You can choose which one you want to use for making egg rolls at home.
The wrappers from recipe 1 can also be used to make papiah (潤餅), which I mentioned above because the wrappers are fully cooked. So you can just prepare some cooked meat and salad to wrap with the papiah.
Edited by Liv Wan
- Recipe 1:
- 200g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 225ml water
- 1 egg
- Recipe 2:
- Note: This recipe is from former food expert.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup ice water
- Some corn flour for dusting the wrappers
- Add flour into a large mixing bowl.
- Add salt and egg into step 1.
- Use a whisk to stir in water into step 2. You need to make sure all the ingredients are perfectly combined together and there are no lumps. You will see the mixture looks like pancake mixture.
- Heat up a 12 inch frying pan or skillet at a low heat. Take a kitchen towel, dip in some cooking oil and use this to wipe a thin layer of oil on the frying pan. Please be very careful and don’t burn your fingers.
- Pour ½ a ladle of the mixture into the frying pan and quickly use a spatula to run through the mixture and make it crepe thin. This procedure is very similar to making French crepes.
- Loosen the edge of the spring roll wrapper with a spatula, then with your fingertips, quickly flip. After 3-4 seconds take it out of the frying pan or skillet then it’s ready to use.
- Store the wrappers in a plastic bag and keep in a refrigerator or freeze.
- Sift the flour into a large bowl.
- Lightly beat the egg with salt. Stir in ¼ cup of water.
- Add the egg and the ice water to the flour.
- Stir in as much of the remaing ¼ cup of water as needed to form a sticky batter.
- Turn the dough out onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, takes about five minutes.
- Cover the dough and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
- Knead the dough briefly, then cut in half. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface.
- Roll each piece out into a 3.5 inch square.
- Stack the wrappers while you are preparing the remainder, covering with a damp cloth so that they don’t dry out. If necessary, lightly dust the wrappers with flour or corn flour to prevent them from sticking together. Use immediately, or refrigerate or freeze in a plastic bag until ready to use.