Green Wraps with Spicy Tamarind Sauce from Richard Etkin of Fort Defiance

Need an idea for how to use your vegetables? We’re featuring CSA-friendly recipes from local chefs and restaurateurs. You can trust them, they’re professionals.

This recipe comes from Richard Etkin, chef de cuisine at Fort Defiance. You wouldn’t know it from tasting his perfect pork chop and bacon-laden collard greens (or from the fact that he’s from Argentina, the land of beef), but Richard has a background in vegan cooking and raw foods.

These vegetable wraps are from his salad-making days. Packed with seasonal vegetables and paired with a spicy-tart-sweet sauce whipped up a blender, these wraps are easy to make but look (and taste) impressive. And isn’t that everything you want in a recipe? — Moriah Simmons

Green Wraps – Makes 6, can be multiplied

Wrappers

  • 3 large collard leaves (or 6 smaller chard, radicchio, or dino kale leaves)
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs soy sauce

If using large wrap leaves, fold in half and remove stem. If using smaller leaves, fold in half and slice off a layer of the stem to make the leaf easier to roll. Coateach leaf with a mixture of soy and olive oil, and let marinate in a shallow dish while you prepare the filling.

Filling

  • 4-5 cups julienned/shredded vegetables (Richard’s recipe calls for zucchini, yellow squash,green cabbage, and red cabbage, but feel free to experiment. This is just as tasty with raw beets, okra, cucumber, lettuce, radish, or onion.)
  • 1/4 cup mint

Julienne the vegetables with a sharp knife, a mandolin, or julienne peeler. If you’d rather, you can also grate the vegetables, but the wraps will be a little harder to hold together.

Mix all vegetables and herbs together in a bowl.

Assembly

Get some skewers or toothpicks and keep them nearby so you’re not forced to secure your wrap with a ridiculous cocktail sword. Shake most of the marinade from one of your leaf wrappers, and place the leaf on a plate or cutting board with the bottom towards you.

Place a handful (about 3/4 c) of the filling about an inch from the bottom of the leaf. Fold the bottom of the leaf over the filling and roll all the way to the tip. Grab one of those handy skewers and poke it through the wrap to hold it together.

Repeat until you’re out of wrappers and filling. Serve with Spicy Tamarind Sauce.

Spicy Tamarind Sauce – Makes about 2 cups of sauce

  • 1 c tamarind
  • ½ c filtered water
  • ½ c agave nectar
  • 2 Tbs umeboshi vinegar (can substitute rice wine vinegar)
  • 2 Tbs lime juice
  • 1 Tbs paprika
  • 1 Tbs chili powder
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • small piece of habenero pepper, seeded and minced.
  • ½-inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 2 scallions, chopped

Soak the tamarind overnight in the 1/2 c water. The next day push the tamarind paste .through a strainer to remove the seeds and pod skin.

Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and pass through a fine mesh strainer to remove any wayward chunks.

(Note: This makes more sauce than you’ll need for 6 small wraps, but you can keep in in the fridge up to 2 weeks.)

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