Saturday, July 8, 2017

black bean summer rolls + creamy cashew salsa

Traditionally, a fresh Vietnamese summer roll contains crisp veggies, chilled vermicelli noodles, either tofu or shrimp, mint, and is served with a sweet dipping sauce. I've discovered that you can wrap up just about any variation of fresh veggies and protein in a rice paper wrapper and call it a summer roll. This recipe follows a southwestern theme using roasted corn, tomatoes, carrots, spring mix, and green onions as the veggies and black beans as the protein. Any number of veggie combinations would work in this recipe, or different beans for that matter! The crisp veggies and fresh cilantro make these rolls perfect on a hot summer day. Dip them in a creamy cashew salsa (that is so easy you won't believe), and sip on an ice cold margarita to cool off. Yep, sounds good to me!

creamy cashew salsa
  • 1/2 cup soaked cashew pieces, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup salsa 
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup water

Soak cashews for at least 20 minutes, but up to a few hours is recommended. Drain and rinse them and add them to a high speed blender. Add salsa (I used fresh salsa from whole foods), salt, nutritional yeast, and water. Blend until super smooth. Transfer the sauce to a jar or container to let set while you construct your summer rolls. 

summer rolls
  • rice paper wrappers
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • corn, either roasted and cut off the cob or canned and drained
  • carrots, cut julienne
  • green onions
  • cilantro
  • mixed greens or romaine lettuce
  • cherry tomatoes
  • avocado
  • other ideas: bell peppers (any color), jalapenos, zucchini, squash, cucumber, etc...

Prepare all veggies and rinse your beans. I like to fill a shallow plate with hot water to dip the rice paper in. Quickly dip one sheet at a time into the water. Once the rice paper sheet is completely wet, place it on another plate or cutting board for constructions. The sheet should still be a little stiff but bendable, as it will continue to soften as you work with it. If you soak it for too long it will be too soft to work with and will fall apart. It helps if the surface you lay it on for construction is wet too so the rice paper doesn't stick to it.

Place all ingredients onto the middle of the sheet and roll it like a burrito, starting with the short ends and then rolling away from you. The rice paper will stick to itself, sealing the summer roll into a pretty little package.

Dip those suckers into your creamy cashew salsa and you have yourself a summer meal!

Not into rice paper? Seems like too much work or too complicated to roll? Try the same thing in tortillas! Fresh tacos with creamy cashew salsa might be more your style!

Original recipe and inspiration from Blissful Basil

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