mai thornhill's eggrolls

mai thornhill was one of my mom's friends when i was growing up in albuquerque. my mom cut her hair, and mai reciprocated with passing on this most holy of all dishes, egg rolls. they are TO DIE FOR. one of my favorites, but so much work, so they rarely get made--generally only for special occassions. the special occassion here was my college roommate coming to visit. this was her favorite thing i made when we lived together, so i thought i'd help relive old times by making them again. i usually make this with mom's fried rice, so i'm going to double a few things in this recipe that i use for both, so i don't have to do everything twice. i'll make a note when i do that, so you can either put it back to half and just make the egg rolls, or have the handy instructions there for making egg rolls and fried rice together.

let's get started. you'll need 4-6 chicken breasts, bones and skin on. 2 bunches of green onions (1 for rolls, one for rice), 1/2 an onion (1/4 for rolls, 1/4 for rice), a small cabbage, 2 carrots, a handful of bean sprouts (not pictured), 4 eggs (2 for rolls, 2 for rice), and 2 packages of egg roll wrappers.

lay your chicken bone-side-down on a foil-lined cookie sheet. cook them at 375* for 45 minutes.
while that's cooking, get chopping. chop up 2 bunches of green onions (1/2 to rice, 1/2 to egg rolls).

...and toss into a large mixing bowl. really large. like the huge tupperware bowl that your grandma had. huge. bowl. can't say it enough.
and dice 1/2 an onion (1/4 to rice, 1/4 to egg rolls).

cut your small-ish cabbage in half.

then cut it into strips, and add to your veggie bowl.
mix up 4 eggs (or 2 if you're just doing the egg rolls and not the rice) with a tablespoon of milk and a dash of salt and pepper.
pour into a hot, buttered frying pan, and let sit.
save your egg-y bowl. you'll need those egg remnants later.when the edges of your egg have cooked, lift the sides with a spatula, and tilt the pan so the runniness on top runs to the sides and gets cooked.

once all the runniness is no longer runny, flip it over and cook the other side. (this side was a little too done, probably had the heat up too high.)

now cut it in half. if you're making fried rice and used four eggs, dice one half first and save for later, then dice the other half and put it in your veggie bowl.

like this.

after your chicken is cooked and cool enough to handle, remove the skin, then peel the chicken off the bones.

shred it into your vegetable bowl, like this:

add in a handful of bean sprouts

then lots of salt and pepper.

peel your carrots,

then grate with the large side of your cheese grater.

and add those to your veggie bowl too.

there. perfect.

now this is the fun part. wash your hands really well, then start mixing. with your hands. that's right, i said it. with your hands. the saltiness feels so good, it's like a natural exfoliant, i swear. mix it all together really well. don't forget the onions way down at the bottom.

there. eggroll perfection.

now grab your egg rolls wrappers and take them out of the package. turn them diagonally.

grab a small handful and set in the middle of the wrapper.

start by folding the corner closest to you towards the middle.

then grab the right corner and fold it into the center, and do the same with the left corner.
make sure all your fixin's are still inside and roll the whole thing towards the last corner, farthest from you. get a little bit of your leftover egg (remember from way back when, when you were cooking eggs and saved the remnants in the bowl?) on your finger, and put it on the corner.

then seal the corner to the rest of the roll.

and repeat. and repeat again. and again. and again. and again about 40,243 more times.

woks are really good for this part, but i don't have one. i used to have a deep fryer that worked okay as well but it got so...fryer-y that i had to throw it away when we moved here. so i just used a deep roasting pan. fill it up with lots (and i mean LOTS) of oil. as in, at least half of one of those gigantic crisco containers. the huge food storage ones. heat the oil to 375* if you have a wok. if not, just occassionally throw leftover egg roll wrapper corners in. if it sinks to the bottom, the oil's not hot enough. if it starts to sizzle and turn brown, you're golden.

toss a few of those babies in and cook until golden brown. you may have to use tongs to make sure all the sides get cooked and brown. squeeze with tongs to get the excess oil out, then set on a cookie sheet lined with paper towels to drain.

like so.

oh my gosh, i think i just died and went to heaven. these are so good people. so good. (that's dave's man hand in the picture, not mine, fyi.)
serve with mom's fried rice and la choy's sweet & sour sauce. delish.

p.s. it makes a lot. like a LOT. so freeze them in ziplocs and eat for weeks. warm up in the microwave, then broil for a minute to keep them crispy.

mai thornhill's eggrolls

4-6 chicken breasts, bones and skin on
2 bunches of green onions (1 for rolls, one for rice)
1/2 an onion (1/4 for rolls, 1/4 for rice)
a small green head of cabbage
2 carrots
a handful of bean sprouts
4 eggs (2 for rolls, 2 for rice)
2 packages of egg roll wrappers.
lots of oil

place chicken, bones down, on a foil-lined cookie sheet. cook at 375* for 45 minutes. meanwhile, chop your green onions, and onion and place in a large mixing bowl. cut the cabbage in half and slice into thin strips; add to bowl with onions. peel and grate 2 carrots, and add to mixture. add a handful of bean sprouts, 2 cooked eggs, and salt & pepper. peel skin off of cooked chicken, remove from bones, and shred into vegetable mixture. mix well. place a handful of mixture on an egg roll wrapper. fold bottom side up, sides in to the middle, and roll to the far corner. seal with a small amount of raw egg on the final corner. deep fry in hot oil until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes. drain on paper towels and serve with mom's fried rice.


brit's CPK chicken tequila fettuccine

...also known as THE YUMMIEST DINNER TO EVER COME OUT OF MY KITCHEN. seriously, my new favorite dish, i've made it twice in the past week. it is amazingly delicious. i will forever be indebted to brit's cooking skills and my sister ellen's persuasion to try it. let's get started.

you'll need a package of fettuccine, cilantro, one red and one yellow pepper (i used green here because it's all i had but it really is better with the red and yellow), chicken stock, 1-2 jalapenos, red onion, soy sauce, lime juice, tequila (or extra lime juice like me if you don't cook with alcohol) and chicken breasts.
start by chopping your cilantro--you need about 1/2 cup of it. pour it into a sauce pan with 2 tbsp. butter,
then add your jalapenos. if you leave the seeds, beware, it WILL be spicy.
cook and stir together for about 5 minutes or until wilty.
saute your peppers and onions with 2 tbsp. butter
and cook until soft.
once your greens are cooked and wilted,
pour in 1/2 cup of chicken stock,
and 6 tablespoons of lime juice (or 4 tablespoons lime juice and 2 tbsp. tequila, if you're so inclined).bring to a boil, and cook until it has a paste-like consistency.
pour your soy sauce over the diced chicken and set aside for 5 minutes.when your paste is ready, it should look like this:
now pour in your chicken and soy sauce,
pour in your cup and a half of cream,
stir, and bring to a boil.
boil for 5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink.
camera battery died, so no pictures of this, but next add in your peppers and onions, then toss with your cooked fettuccine.
serve with freshly-grated parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, and a lime wedge.
make it tonight. you'll thank me (and brit) later.

CPK's Chicken Tequila Fettuccine

  • 1 pound dry spinach fettuccine(i just use regular fettuccine)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 cloves minced fresh garlic (i use bottled)
  • 1-2 jalapenos, minced (remove seeds and veins for less heat if desired)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp gold tequila (I don't cook with alcohol, so I just add 2 more tbsp of lime juice)
  • 4 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lime juice (I've also used bottled and it tastes just fine)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 pound chicken breast, diced
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • lime wedges, Parmesan cheese, and red pepper flakes for garnish

1. In large saucepan, cook cilantro, garlic and jalapeno in 2 tbsp butter over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes, until wilted. In a second pot, boil water for spinach fettuccine.
2. In a saute pan, begin sauteing the peppers and onion in 2 tbsp of butter over medium heat until soft.
3. To large saucepan with cilantro/jalapenos/garlic, add stock, tequila and lime juice. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until reduced to a paste like consistency; set aside.
4. Pour soy sauce over diced chicken; set aside for 5 minutes. Add to saucepan, along with cream and bring to a boil. Cook until chicken is no longer pink and sauce is thick (about 5 minutes). Add sauteed veggies to sauce mixture and toss with cooked spinach fettuccine. Serve with lime wedge and Parmesan cheese.

(yeah that's right, the last 2 recipes are from brit. you should really check out her blog and try some of her recipes. they're ALL good. really.)