Sabich Summer Rolls with Tahini Dipping Sauce
I LOVE sabich. I mean, really love. When I'm in Israel my diet goes right out the window and I am inhaling Sabichs at a rate that is alarming. Back in America, reality sets in and so does the number on the scale. "But how can I live without my beloved Sabich," I think. Enter: Sabich summer roll. The flavor of a sabich but without all the excess carbs. Believe it or not, but without all that excess bread, in some ways, the flavors shine more.
If you're wondering where the chummus and amba are I will explain. The first time I made these rolls I tried to put the chummus and tchina in the roll. It was delicious but messy, so this time around I served them as dipping sauces on the side. I didn't have access to amba but get as crazy as you'd like with the dipping sauces.
Lastly, these can be made a day in advance. Spray the plate with a little oil to avoid stickiness and line them on a plate (don't stack) and store in the fridge.
For the summer rolls
1 package rice paper rolls
7 persian cucumbers
1 small carton cherry tomatoes
5 eggs, hard boiled
1 large eggplant
2 tablespoons za'atar
2 tablespoons olive oil
Large serving bowl with room temperature water
For the zchug
1/2 cup cilantro or parsley (or 1/4 cup of each)
5 serrano peppers
1/2 cup olive oil
juice of 1 lime
salt, to taste
For the Tahini Dipping Sauce
1/2 cup tahini
1/2 cup water
juice of 1 lemon
salt, to taste
1. Start by "sweating" your eggplant. Cut the eggplant into small sticks, about 1" thick and 1/2" long. Place eggplant on a plate or tray and season very generously with salt. Allow the eggplant to sit in the salt for at least 30 minutes, up to two hours.
2. Preheat oven to 400°
3. Make the zchug by roughly chopping the peppers and combining them with the rest of the ingredients in a food processor. For a very spicy zchug leave all the peppers with their seeds intact. To tone down the spiciness deseed some or all of the peppers. Process the mixture until completely broken down and a sauce forms.
4. Pat the eggplant dry with paper towels. Place in a baking dish and season with olive oil and za'atar. Bake until the eggplant begins to brown, about 30 minutes. (This can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for a couple days.)
5. Prep the remainder of the spring roll ingredients. Julienne the cucumbers, cut the cherry tomatoes into quarters and hard boil the eggs if you haven't yet. Cut the eggs in half lengthwise, and then into 3-4 more pieces, width wise.
6. Allow the cooked eggplants to cool slightly and begin to assemble your summer roll. Dunk each piece of rice paper into the bowl of water so that it is fully submerged. Leave it submerged for about 10 seconds. Allow the rice paper to soak up the water for 10-15 seconds before you start assembling. When the rice paper is ready it will be pliable. For further clarification on this process watch this video.
7. Layer each of the ingredients on the edge of the rice paper closest to you and top with about 1 teaspoon of zchug. Gently pull the edge of the rice paper and roll it over the ingredients. After you've made the initial first roll, hold it in place and tuck the edges in towards the center and now continue to roll tightly until you've reached the end. Repeat with the remaining rolls.
8. Lastly, make the tahini by mixing all the ingredients in a bowl. You can add more tahini or more water, depending on your desired consistency. Serve tahini in a bowl alongside the rolls.