This is the second time I’ve made this dish. The first was the week of the new year and I was in search of something different from the food I usually make during the holidays. Lime and cashew paste smeared over the fish sounded so good – it was delicious! But…I struggled with the rice paper! I’ve made fried Vietnamese spring rolls oodles of times but for some reason, the rice paper was not co-operating (both times!).
These fish rolls are easy enough to make and I think the issue was the thickness of the fish. In the past, when I have made spring rolls, the filling has been smaller. The rice paper didn’t turn a lovely golden brown, but having said that, the flavours from the cashews and a bit of heat from the chili made for a lovely snack. Tender chunks of fish were the end result and although the rice paper misbehaved, I’ll make this again with smaller portions.
1 cup cashews
1 red chili, roughly chopped
handful or two of coriander leaves (can also use parsley)
zest of one lime
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 lb. cod fillets (or other firm white fish) divided into 12 portions
12 small rice paper wrappers
Place cashews, chili, coriander, lime zest and juice into a food processor (or blender) and process into a paste. Put a generous tablespoon of the paste on top of each fish piece. Dip rice paper rolls into warm water until slightly softened or follow instructions on package. Place on a dry surface and put fish in middle. Fold sides of rice paper onto fish and roll up ends. Heat oil in a wok and cook 3 minutes per side. Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.
The Culinary Chase’s Note: If fish is less than one-inch thick, reduce cooking time. If you have any paste leftover, use it as a base for a curry sauce. Omit rice paper and bake in 375f (190c) oven 12 – 15 minutes. Enjoy!