Monday, October 24, 2011

Lumpia-Gourmet Magazine June 1972

These are not what I typically think of as, "Lumpia." At least they aren't what my friend Miriam used to make. Hers were fried. I'm pretty sure she bought the wrappers frozen as well. Still, in 1972 the western understanding of Philippine cookery might have been limited by what was served in larger cities. Traditional or not, they were eaten to the last.

A few thoughts:

I would make these smaller. What I ended up with were not unlike the size of a burrito. No one here seemed to mind, but really, they would have rolled better smaller.

I made fake ham for the filling, and skipped the seafood altogether. I have no idea if Danny is allergic to shellfish, but he's allergic to practically everything else, and I wasn't in the mood to deal with eppi pens tonight. Mr. ETB who has eaten his share of ham over the years, said I made a convincing substitute from the baked tofu. Smoked salt, corn oil, honey, cloves and cider vinegar did the trick. Tofu is kind of miraculous in the way it absorbs whatever flavour you soak it in. So that worked, I'm pleased.

The pancakes for this recipe are difficult to make. I consider myself pretty skilled with a crepe, but these were really temperamental. Cook them longer than you think you need to, and they will release from the sides. You should also whisk everything together before pouring. It didn't say to in the recipe, and it seems counter-intuitive after beating egg whites and folding yolks, but really, if you don't whisk it, you will be frying puffs of egg whites. It took a few tries, but eventually I figured it out.

This issue has an entire section devoted to aspics. 1972. God I miss the early 70's. There are few things I enjoy more than a tomato aspic. Unfortunately, no one in this household will touch it. *Sniffle*. Anyone want to come over and have a tomato aspic on iceberg lettuce with stilton? I'm suddenly possessed of a desire to learn bridge.

Because this is a vintage recipe, and possibly of interest to people that like this sort of thing, I'll post the recipe as it appeared in my copy of Gourmet in June 1972.

Make the pancakes: In a bowl beat 2 egg whites with a pinch of salt until they form soft peaks. Fold in 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten. Dissolve 1/2 cup cornstarch (cornflour) in 1 cup of water until smooth. Add this to the egg mixture. (My note, whisk it together at this point). Heat a 6 inch crepe pan (don't be a moron like me and use a large pan) and brush it with olive oil. Pour in 2 tablespoons of batter and tilt and rotate pan to cover the bottom evenly with batter. Cook the pancake until it is firm and slide it onto a plate without turning it. Continue in this manner until all batter is used.

Make the filling:
In a skillet saute 1/2 onion, thinly sliced and 1 clove garlic, minced in 2 tablespoons olive oil until the vegetables are soft. Add 1/4 pound cooked pork, diced, 1/2 cup cooked chick peas, 1/4 cup peeled and diced raw shrimps, and 2 tablespoons chopped ham. Cook the mixture stirring for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup julienne strips of raw green bean, 1 raw carrots cut into 1 inch long julienne strips, and 4 ounces of water chestnuts, thinly sliced. Simmer the mixture, covered stirring once or twice for 5 minutes. Add 1 cup shredded cabbage and simmer covered for 5 minutes more or until vegetables are tender. Add 1 teaspoon salt or to taste (If using tinned chickpeas, omit salt).

Arrange a lettuce leaf on each pancake. Put 1 tablespoon of the filling on each leaf. Fold in 2 sides of pancake, and roll them up.

Make the sauce:
In a small saucepan combine 1/2 cup beef broth, 1/4 cup soy sauce, and 1 tablespoon sugar. Bring to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water. Simmer the sauce 1 minute. Pour into a small bowl, sprinkle it with 1/2 a chopped garlic clove, and serve it with the pancakes. Makes about 18 lumpia.

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