This is nothing new to Filipinas...
Recently CeliaK posted about how to roll lumpia. Then I think it was in WK where I complained that I can't find any ground pork at the nearest grocery store here (I did not like the beef that much). And someone suggested that I just buy pork and request it to be ground or I can just do it myself. Since I have no grinder yet, I was a bit disheartened. Then after having about a cup of leftover pork sausage an idea sparked. I tried to use it in lumpia. And in my most recent post, Cerridwen commented about how her mother cooked Filipino foods using American ingredients, and suggested that I can make use of the pork sausage for bola-bola. What a wonderful idea! She gave other tips too.
My usual ingredients in the usual proportions are:
Egg Roll Wrappers (Nasoya is the only available brand here, which I don't really find as good as the lumpia wrappers in the Philippines. I tried to make some before, using Sassy's instructions, but maybe my skillet or the stovetop was not right. I got discouraged after 5 attempts.)
1 cup Ground Meat (pork sausage in this post, may be beef, or the flesh of steamed fish, or minced chicken or even minced shrimps)
Chopped Vegetables (usually 3 cloves garlic, half an onion, half a medium carrot, 3-5 sprigs parsley, 1/4 cup green beans)
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg (for coherence)
2 cups cooking oil for deep-frying (when available, I use the oil from fat back (?) )
(Proportions may vary from person to person.)
Chop all veggies together.
Mix the chopped veggies with the pork sausage, egg and salt and pepper to taste (not too much because pork sausage is already flavored.
I cut my wrap in half to have triangles (because they are big). I put the mixture like so, about the size of middle finger and as thick as the thumb. Finger size lumpia allows me to cook them to crispy golden brown without undercooking the meat.
Fold the sides over the mixture.
Roll tightly. Wet the sealing edges with water or egg to make it sticky. (Doesn't really have to be egg or a flour-water mixture, as the wet wrapper will become sticky when wet.)
Arrange them with wax paper between layers to prevent sticking (mixture might exude fluid that will cause stickiness). This can be frozen or consumed right away. However, with this type of wrapper, frying the frozen rolls result to dark brown color, which is not too appealing. Thawing just makes it sticky and soggy appearing. I liked it better when cooked right away.
Deep-fry in medium saucepan with about 2 inches oil heated to smoking point and kept on high. (Or if you have a deep-fryer, maybe it will work better. I don't have one.)
Rolls should be placed one by one with enough interval to partially cook (about 5-10 seconds) the wrap before another is placed into the pan. This avoids sticking with one another. After several minutes the rolls will start to rise. Wait til it turns golden brown before removing (about 5 or more minutes).
Drain on paper towels.
I love serving lumpia with vinegar dip (made of 1/4 cup cider vinegar with salt, red and black ground peppers to taste and 1 crushed clove of garlic. The kids like them with ketchup. Hubby does not care for it because of the veggies it contains. Oh well, I just wanted to satisfy my craving for lumpia... In the past year, I have made this only 3 times, and an individual eats only about 3-4 sticks. Not bad...(just shake the guilt off by doing jumping jacks during commercial breaks while watching TV.)
I even crave for lumpia with togue (bean sprouts), but kids don't like them that much, and I still have to experiment sprouting my own beans. Another lumpia I miss is the fresh lumpiang ubod, which makes use of the core of a young coconut tree, if I am not mistaken???, dipped in peanuty-garlicky sauce. I have never tried making that.
And sometimes I tend not to post anymore some Filipino recipes that are so common that they don't really seem exciting to post about, but then I think of some American friends that I have met both online and in person who ask me to post more Filipino dishes, so I persist...