It's A Wrap
If you don't have the time to make pancake wrappers for fresh lumpia, you can also use Vietnamese rice paper wrappers, which are sold in many Asian grocery stores. Look for round wrappers about 8 inches across. They're paper-thin, translucent, and brittle, with a delicate lattice pattern from the woven drying racks on which they're made. To soften them, dip them briefly in a bowl of warm water, shaking off the excess before you put the wrapper on your plate. In a few seconds, the wrapper will be soft enough to roll around the lettuce and the filling.
Lumpia are among the most famous of all Filipino dishes. These are not the fried, eggroll-like lumpia you may have tried, but a lighter, home-style version, in which delicate egg pancakes are rolled around lettuce and a tasty chicken, shrimp, and vegetable filling. If you have adventurous guests, let everybody make their own lumpia right at the table-it's a great way to get a dinner party rolling!
2 large eggs
1-1/4 cups water
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
About 3 tablespoons cooking oil
1/2 cup julienned onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast half, thinly sliced
1/4 pound medium raw shrimp, shelled, deveined, and halved
1-1/2 cups finely julienned jicama
1/2 small carrot, finely julienned
2 green onions, finely julienned
2 teaspoons oyster-flavored sauce
1 teaspoon Filipino fish sauce (patis)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
5 tender lettuce leaves
Prepare wrappers: In a bowl, whisk together eggs, water, cornstarch, flour, and salt until smooth. Strain batter.
Place a nonstick 8-inch omelet pan over medium heat until hot; brush with 1/4 teaspoon oil. Pour 1/4 cup batter into pan; tilt pan so batter covers entire surface. Cook until edge of wrapper is lightly browned and surface looks dry, about 45 seconds. Loosen edge with a spatula, turn wrapper, and cook 10 seconds longer. Turn wrapper out of pan onto a plate. Repeat to use all batter.
Prepare filling: Place a wok over high heat until hot. Add 1 tablespoon oil, swirling to coat sides. Add onion and garlic. Stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add chicken and shrimp; stir-fry for 2 minutes. Remove from pan. Heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add jicama and carrot; stir-fry for 1 minute. Add green onions; cook until vegetables are tender crisp, about 2 minutes. Return chicken mixture to pan; add oyster-flavored sauce, fish sauce, and pepper; cook for 1 minute. Cool.
Cut lettuce in half lengthwise. For each lumpia, place a piece of lettuce on wrapper. Spoon about 1/3 cup filling into center of wrapper. Fold bottom third of wrapper over filling, then fold in sides.
Serve with garlic dipping sauce or a mixture of hoisin sauce and soy sauce.
Martin Yan's Asia
Favorite Recipes from Hong Kong, Singapore,
Malaysia, the Philippines, and Japan
By Martin Yan
KQED Books & Tapes
Color pictures throughout
Recipe Reprinted by permission.
Martin Yan's Asia
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This page created February 1999