Lumpia

Fried lumpia is a traditional Filipino dish, similar to egg rolls,  that are stuffed with pork and vegetables then fried to perfection. When I think of lumpia it makes me smile because it brings me back to happy childhood memories of helping my Mom in the kitchen. Often times, we would whip up this dish for large family gatherings or as a savory snack during the holidays.
What I love most about Filipino cuisine is its tastes very from salty to bitter; spicy and sweet. And what I love about lumpia (besides the garlic-vinegar dipping sauce) is everyone’s recipe is slightly different. My co-worker Anna usually adds in bean sprouts and green beans to the traditional list of veggies while others add in water chestnuts, mushrooms or even green onions.

Here’s a more traditional recipe for lumpia that was passed down from my Mom, which includes a little cilantro for added freshness.

Lumpia

  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Cilantro, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 15 – 30 lumpia wrappers
  • Egg wash (to seal the wrappers)

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet or wok and cook the pork until browned. Remove the pork and set aside. Drain grease from the pan leaving a thin coating. Add garlic and onions and saute for about 2 minutes. Add in the carrots and continue to cook until slightly tender, yet still crisp (about 5 minutes). Remove from the heat and stir in the cooked pork. Season filling with soy sauce, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Set aside until cooled. (make sure filling is cool to the touch, otherwise it will make the wrappers soggy)

Place filling towards the center edge of the wrapper. Fold over the corner, tuck in the sides and roll neatly. I prefer to roll shorter / fatter rolls where some prefer to roll long and skinny – it’s up to you. Now seal the wrapper with egg wash or water. Below is an example from the back of the wrapper package:

     

Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add 4-5 pieces of lumpia to the oil and fry until golden brown on all sides (about 2 minutes). Drain on paper towels and serve immediately with a garlic-vinegar dipping sauce.

Garlic Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and serve alongside the lumpia.


To me, lumpia brings people together. I recently made it to surprise my grandmother on her 85th birthday as it’s her favorite Filipino dish.

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