Staying in for the night with your honey, watching Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve in your favorite spot on the couch? There’s an app for that. Going to a party at a close friend’s house for some New Years shenanigans? There’s an app for that. Hosting a party with small bites to be nibbled on throughout the night, accompanied by a bubbly cocktail? I’m pretty sure there’s an app for that too.
Earlier in December, the mister and I hosted a pre-Christmas get-together for a small group of friends. I always make enough food to feed not only a small battalion, but an entire brigade as well (a trait directly inherited from my mother. I don’t quite have mom’s Martha Stewart-like ability to tszuj a table yet, but that will come with time.) We had coconut crusted gulf shrimp, bacon-wrapped dates, tortilla chips and homemade canned summer salsa, tortilla española with romesco aioli, and these avocado eggrolls, with sweet chile lime dipping sauce. Oh–and this list doesn’t include the tasty assortment of apps that each guest brought. Yes, I’d say we went a bit overboard.
The mister and I are going out dancing for New Year’s Eve this year, but I couldn’t resist making these eggrolls again this week, this time to be eaten as a meal over asian slaw. My decision was partially inspired by the ending of holiday appetizer party season, and the fact that avocado season is in full swing–three for $1, anyone? I was inspired to create these after I saw Elissa’s beautifully photographed avocado eggrolls on 17 and Baking. Hers are absolutely delicious, but I decided to create my own version, packed with tangy lime, ginger, scallion*, and cilantro, with a sweet chile dipping sauce. Kind of like an asian guacamole fried in a wrapper until crunchy and golden. I always like eating fried foods with something fresh and healthy to balance out the texture and heat. This time, I tossed cabbage and carrot with a simple ginger-rice vinegar dressing and a squeeze of lime.
In the summer, there are barbeques to be held, and spring will be time for much lighter fare. This, my friends, is prime time for hot, flavor-packed small bites, to bring people around the table. Remember, there’s an app for just about anything, so I hope your New Year’s Eve is filled with tasty food and good company. I’ll see you in 2012!
Ginger-Scallion Avocado Eggrolls with Sweet Chile-Lime Dipping Sauce and Asian Slaw
Makes 8 large eggrolls
The best eggrolls are served golden, crisp and hot, and these are no exception. Plan on serving them immediately after frying, lest they lose their crispness. The filling can be made a few hours ahead of time–just be sure to spread a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the avocado mixture to avoid browning. Oh, and one more thing– Avocados take on a funny taste when over-mushed, so mush gently!
For the Eggrolls:
- 5 large avocados
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger root
- 2 scallions, chopped (1/4 cup minced red onion works too)
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 8 eggroll wrappers
- Small dish of water, to seal
- Canola or vegetable oil, to fill a medium pot (not nonstick) or dutch oven to 2 inches
Cut each avocado in half and remove the seed. With a butter knife, score the inside of the avocado (kind of like tic-tac-toe), and scoop out the flesh with a spoon into a medium bowl. With a fork, gently mash the avocado together with the lime juice and salt, leaving some texture. Gently fold in the remaining ingredients until evenly combined.
To fill the eggrolls, lay out one wrapper with a corner pointed toward you, and place 1/4 cup of filling in the center. Fold the corner over the avocado mixture. Fold the left and right corners toward the center and roll. Dip a finger into the water, and trace it over the inside edge of the last corner, then seal it onto the eggroll.
Fill a medium pot to 2 inches with oil, and heat over medium-high heat until hot. Test the heat of the oil by dropping a small piece of eggroll wrapper in. The oil should immediately bubble, and the wonton should float to the top. Working in batches of 2, gently lower in the eggrolls, and fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove the eggrolls to a paper towel lined plate to cool slightly before serving. Serve while hot with sweet chile dipping sauce.
*When I made these to photograph, I had forgotten to buy scallions, so I subbed red onion, which is what you see pictured…no harm done!
Sweet Chile-Lime Dipping Sauce
Really, just a slightly doctored up version of the pre-made Thai sweet chile sauce we all love. Thanks, Epicurious!
- 3/4 cup Asian sweet chili sauce*
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.
Asian Ginger Slaw
- 2 cups thinly sliced red cabbage (from about a quarter of a medium red cabbage)
- 2 cups thinly sliced green cabbage (I used regular green cabbage, but napa would be good here as well)
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and julienned or grated
- 1/4 cup unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- juice from 1/2 lime
- 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
- 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoons salt, to taste
- 1 tablespoon peanut or canola oil
Place the cabbage and carrot in a medium bowl. In a separate small bowl, whisk the rice wine vinegar, lime juice, ginger, salt, and oil together until combined. Pour into the bowl with the cabbage and carrot. Stir and toss well until well coated. Let stand for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to develop. Toss again and serve.