Imagine An Egg Roll Without the Wrapper
|By Meg Jones - wife, mother,
This recipe is for great egg rolls without the wrapper. Four summers ago, our oldest daughter was getting excited for her freshman year in college and our youngest was exploring schools of interest as she looked forward to a few months of writing essays for college applications.
(Here’s one such provocative prompt: “If you could have any superpower but had to give up one of the five senses in exchange, what would you choose – both superpower and sense – and what would you use your superpower for?”…..food for thought!)
We planned a college road trip throughout the northeast that culminated in a long weekend visit with friends at their house in the Hamptons. There, I was exposed for the first time to two products that have become staples in my life: LaCroix water and Paleo magazine. But since I don’t cook with LaCroix water, I’ll focus on Paleo.
I have experimented intermittently with reducing carbs or dairy in my diet, usually for weight-loss purposes. What struck me about Paleo is its holistic approach to health and its forgiving nature. That is, you don’t have to be “all-in” to benefit from aspects of a paleo lifestyle.
While I’m sure devotees will take issue with my oversimplification, I understand a paleo lifestyle to include the following: eat real food, move and play, connect with others, unplug, sleep well, get sun. It’s hard to argue with any of these, especially these days when self-care is so important, and I can really get behind eating real food.
My definition of “real food” is what I find on the perimeter of grocery stores: vegetables, fruits, nuts, meats, dairy, breads. The middle aisles seem to house the packaged goods, and unless I need something for baking, or pasta, rice, dried beans or spices, there’s not much on my list that takes me off the exterior loop.
(The exception would be the frozen veggie aisle at Trader Joe’s where I always find some fun vegetable combo to play with, like tri-colored frozen cauliflower that, when cooked and smashed, makes a perfect foundation for a poached egg.) So as you might expect, ingredients in a paleo recipe are largely found at the perimeter.
Each month when my subscription to Paleo appears, the first thing I do is leaf through the recipe pages; you can always count on 5-days’ worth of breakfast, lunch and dinner options. This week we tried what I call the ‘inside-out’ egg roll – all the deliciousness of an egg roll but just the stuffing.
We had almost everything on hand except for coconut aminos so we used tamari sauce instead but you could also use soy sauce. If you decide to go with coconut aminos, you will likely find them near the spices and sauces in organic markets.
What is coconut aminos? Coconut aminos is a popular soy sauce substitute. It is made from the fermented sap of coconut palm plus sea salt.
It looks a lot like to light soy sauce with similar texture and a sweeter flavor. Does it taste like coconut? No.
People who can't eat soy or are wheat and gluten free use it it rather than soy. And yes, it is Keto friendly.
My family was skeptical about this dish, but we all really enjoyed it and look forward to more paleo experimentation. Give it a try, and don’t forget to put down your phone, take a walk in the sun, and enjoy your family time.
Inside Out Egg Roll
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil We keep a big jar on handand use for many dishes as an alternative to other oils
- 2 inch piece fresh ginger peeled and grated - We also have a tube of minced ginger in the refrigerator which you can usually find inthe veggie aisle and is a good alternative that keeps forever
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 1 pound ground turkey substitute any ground meat
- ½ cup carrots shredded
- 2 tablespoons tamari sauce soy or coconut aminos if you have some
- 2 teaspoons sriacha or other hot sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 6 cups cabbage thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup green onions chopped for garnish
- Melt the coconut oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the ginger, garlic and onion and cook 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until onions and soft and translucent.
- Add ground pork, breaking up the large pieces, and cook for 6 to 8 minutes until cooked all the way through so that no pink is showing.
- Add the carrots, tamari sauce, sriracha, sesame,oil, cabbage, vinegar and salt. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until carrots and cabbage are soft. You may want to put a cover over the pan to help it along.
- Serve plain or over a bed of rice as we did (not paleo, but like I said, it’s forgiving), topped with the green onions.