Rolling out the flavours

Introducing Running Hawker (from left), Mica Doc, Lucy Lu and Wenting Mere Cheung. Photos by Dani Johnson.
Introducing Running Hawker (from left), Mica Doc, Lucy Lu and Wenting Mere Cheung. Photos by Dani Johnson.
In a final year project, three Otago Polytechnic students created a fusion of tastes for Dunedin’s streets.

In the cooking world, fusion relates to the marriage of one or more cooking traditions, techniques or disciplines to form new cuisine outcomes.

Today's Cooking 101 is brought to you by former year-three Otago Polytechnic bachelor of culinary arts students Mica Doc from Manila, Lucy Lu from Jin Yuguan, China and Wenting Mere Cheung from Teo Cheow, China, who love to experiment with traditional and contemporary street food.

As part of their final-year project work, these students set up a mobile catering company called Running Hawker, which brought the flavours, sounds and theatre of Asian street food to many locations.

In today's feature, they share one of their most popular dishes, vegetarian spring rolls.

Vegetarian spring rolls

Makes 20 portions

Ingredients
250g shiitake mushrooms, sliced
250g field mushrooms, sliced
100g red onion, finely cubed
100g mung beans
150g cabbage, shredded
50g carrot, cut into very small matchsticks
50g spring onion, sliced
1 Tbsp canola oil
20g soy sauce
4
0g vegetarian stir-fry sauce
salt and pepper, to taste
20 spring roll wrappers

Method
1. Heat the oil in a medium pot, sweat the garlic and red onion until soft.

2. Add field mushrooms and carrot. Cook for 5 minutes.

3. Add the soaked shiitake mushrooms. Note: before adding these mushrooms make sure you have squeezed out any extra liquid using a muslin cloth or paper towel. Then add cabbage and cook until the cabbage starts to wilt.

 

 

 

 

 

4. Mix in mung beans and all of the sauces, remove from the heat, then mix in the spring onion.

5. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Move the mix on to a flat tray for it to completely cool before portioning.

 

 

 

 

 

6. Take one spring roll wrapper and place a tablespoon of your mixture in the centre. Using water to slightly wet the edges, tuck corners over the mixture and roll the other corners together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. Deep fry at 180degC until pastry is golden brown. Serve with dippings of choice. For a fresh flavour explosion we recommend wrapping a fresh mint leaf around each spring roll too!

 

 

 

 

 

Chefs' tips

To prepare the shiitake mushrooms, soak in hot water until soft.

Squeezing excess liquid out of the mushrooms will create a better mixture, which means your spring rolls won't be soggy.

 

 

 

 

 

When preparing our carrot, we used a type of cut called the julienne. This means small matchsticks. To do this we used a mandolin. If you don't have one of these you can just cut carefully with a knife.

When you prepare your spring onions, you could reserve a couple of slices for presentation.

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