I should have doubled this recipe. The recipe made about 18 lumpia and if I hadn’t left some uncooked for photos, you would have no pictures of the finished product because the Godfather would likely have eaten every one, and this is why you need to make this.
As recent California transplants, it’s become very clear that certain foods we took for granted as readily available are not actually so available anywhere else, even in a large metropolitan area. Banh mi is one of them (the pickled vegetables here are really sweet), we haven’t been brave enough to venture out for Mexican food yet, and Filipino food has been non-existent. We didn’t go out super often in California since I make so much at home, but it was nice to know that, should we want it, pancit and lumpia were readily available at a local restaurant for like $5.
As I was thinking about unique Thanksgiving leftover recipes to post, my mind wandered to the foods we enjoyed in California (if you follow my instagram you’d have seen this coming a mile away) and lumpia was the one thing I hadn’t made since moving! While we definitely have enjoyed lumpia alone with a salad or rice, I always think of them together, so I decided to pair it with a vegetable pancit. Traditionally, pancit has meat in it and serves as a complete meal, but since we are pairing it here, this one is vegetarian.
This is NOT a traditional lumpia. It’s fusion food, primarily relying on traditional flavors with a twist, but it’s a great way to introduce Filipino flavors to the less-adventurous eaters in your family since the leftover thanksgiving turkey and dried cranberries are two very familiar flavors. You’ll need to stop yourself from eating the filling before wrapping the lumpia into perfect little hand-held rolls of joy. I was going to recommend doubling if you had enough leftover turkey, but I’m telling you now… skip one turkey sandwich meal and double this recipe! You can freeze the un-fried lumpia and cook on demand. The lumpia wrappers can be found in the international freezer section of your grocery store, or the freezer section of an Asian grocery store and will say “lumpia” right on the box.
The pancit is made with rice noodles (vermicelli) that you can find at any Asian grocery store and most major chain grocery stores for less than $2 and 8 ounces (half of a 1 lb package) will feed 4-6, so it makes quite a bit! If you don’t have a wok (I don’t at the moment), use a large nonstick skillet. You don’t want to break the noodles because, as a traditional dish for birthdays, tradition says that long noodles = long life. My noodles didn’t quite fit into the skillet dry, so I used a soup ladle to get the broth over the noodles to soften them. This is a great dish to use your homemade vegetable stock… recipe here.
- 1 lb turkey chopped
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 cups medium onion diced (about 1 3/4 )
- 1 cup grated carrot
- 2/3 c jicama
- 1/4 c soy sauce
- 1 1/2 tsp fish sauce
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries chopped
- 18 lumpia wrappers
- oil for frying
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook about 2 minutes until the onion starts to become translucent.
- Add the carrot, jicama, and cranberries, cook for another two minutes.
- Add the soy sauce, fish sauce, and turkey. Cook another 3-5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Once the turkey filling is cool, roll the lumpia. Take a lumpia wrapper, place about two heaping tablespoons near one corner of your wrapper and shape into a tube. Fold the wrapper over the filling. Then fold in either side and roll up. When you have almost finished rolling, dab some water along the top edge of the wrapper to seal. Repeat until you run out of filling.
- You may freeze lumpia for long term storage or keep in the refrigerator if you plan to use in the next day or two.
- To pan fry: heat about a half inch of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place the lumpia in the pan in batches, rotating periodically to achieve an even brown color. Drain on a paper towel and serve. To deep fry: follow the instructions on your deep fryer and cook the lumpia until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and serve.
- 8 oz vermicelli rice stick noodles
- 3 c vegetable broth
- 4 c Napa cabbage, finely chopped (I like to julienne)
- 2 medium carrots, finely chopped
- 1½ c finely chopped onion
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp oil
- ¼ c soy sauce
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for two minutes until they become slightly translucent. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
- Add the cabbage and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, about five minutes. Add the fish sauce and cook a minute longer.
- Remove the vegetables from the heat. Put the vegetable stock and soy sauce in a wok or large skillet. Bring to a boil. Cook the rice sticks according to the package instructions (don't break them!). Move in the pan constantly because they will stick as they absorb the broth.
- Combine the vegetables with the noodles and serve.