This is sort of a mix between a Thai/Vietnamese spring roll and a burrito, using leftover elk or venison Rendang as the protein.
Because making Rendang is so delicious but such an ordeal, I typically make a whole butt load of it. While it does, like a fine wine, get better with age, after about the 3rd day of eating Rendang you start to get a little tired of it.
So I thought a clever little rehash would be to make a sort of Asian-style burrito, kind of like the spring rolls you get at a Thai restaurant but using rice instead of vermicelli. The rice paper rolls can be found at any Asian grocery store, or in the Asian section of places like Central Market or Whole Foods if you don’t live near a good Asian market. A few of these stout little suckers is definitely enough to make a meal out of.
For the peanut sauce, the stuff I had in my fridge had gone bad because I hadn’t used it in like a year. I used this recipe because I happened to have all the ingredients and it was one of those moments where I decided it was less trouble to make myself than to run to the store. (Yes, I even had the curry paste; sometimes I think Carmen Sandiego must be hiding in my pantry somewhere.) At any rate, I finally discovered the secret to that delicious Thai peanut sauce. It’s coconut milk, helloooo! Oh, and if you don’t cook the sauce, you can totally use the recipe as peanut salad dressing. (Or even set some aside for peanut dressing; I halved the recipe and it still made more than I knew what to do with.)
I think the rolling of these is half the fun, and it makes a good conversation piece and/or culinary craft if you’re entertaining. (I invented the term “culinary craft” to make it seem like “helping me in the kitchen” is actually fun-time.)
Leftover rendang rolls
|Prep time||20 minutes|
|Cook time||5 minutes|
|Total time||25 minutes|
- 2 cups cooked rice (white, brown or sticky)
- 8 rice paper rounds
- 2 cups leftover rendang (see recipe)
- 2 cup (lettuce)
- 2 cups sliced vegetables (bell pepper, matchstick carrots, cucumber)
- 1/2 cup peanut sauce
- About 16basil and/or mint leaves
- 4 lime wedges
- 1 Large bowl of warm water
|Set your rice cooking. Reheat your leftover Rendang and shred the meat with a fork. Heat the large bowl of water to about luke warm. Set out all the remaining ingredients on the table or counter where everyone will be assembling their rolls, and the rice when it's finished.|
|Dip the rice paper round in the warm water and turn it so the whole wrap has been wetted. Set it on your plate (it will still be somewhat stiff). Build your roll by adding about 1/4 each of rice, lettuce and shredded Rendang. It helps if you put the roll ingredients slightly towards the edge of the wrap rather than directly in the middle. Top with sliced veggies, basil, peanut sauce and a lime squeeze to taste.|
|Fold in the sides of the rice paper. It should now be soft and slightly sticky. Then tuck the roll's innards as you fold the flap over and roll it. Serve with more peanut sauce.|