Mama Mercedes' Lumpia: A Collab with Gigi from LEVO
Photography & Infusion by Monica Lo
Words by Gigi, @ohhmygeeg
Recipe by Mercedes Cueva aka Gigi’s Mommy
I grew up thinking this was the only version of egg rolls in the world. I have so many memories of my mom sitting in the kitchen standing over bowls of shredded veggies. I’d blink and then she’d mixed the veggies and starting wrapping and folding the mix into seamless little envelopes of soon-to-be-fried pockets of heaven.
I feel like it gives my mom so much joy to do this. She is clearly skilled at it and over time I realized it is her art--food. Feeding all of us. I’m so spoiled by my mom when it comes to food. She knows exactly what I like and totally savors in feeding me all of it.
This appetizer or hearty snack is a favorite from my Filipino mom, Mercedes. You know it’s good when all your non-Filipino friends love it! One year, my mom wrapped me a bag full and I brought them to a Friendsgiving. I was so proud to show off my mom’s work, even when all I did was fry ‘em!
That’s my ride or die. Love You, Mommy Mae.
Mama Mercedes' Lumpia
• 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
• 1 white onion, thinly sliced
• 1 large cooked chicken breast, shredded, optional
• 1 medium green cabbage, thinly sliced
• 2 carrots, julienned
• 2 cups green beans, julienned
• 20 oz bamboo shoots, shredded
• 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
• 1 Tbsp medicated vegetable oil
• 2 tsp soy sauce
• 1 Tbsp chicken broth
• 1 package of square lumpia wrappers or spring roll wrappers, 25 count
• 1 egg, beaten
• Frying oil
1. Add 1 Tbsp vegetable oil in a wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Add with garlic, onions and chicken to sauté, about 1 minute.
2. Add cabbage, carrots, green beans, bamboo shoots, soy sauce, and chicken broth to the skillet and sauté for another 3 minutes, the vegetables should be cooked but still crisp. Turn the heat off, add medicated vegetable oil and salt and pepper to taste. Let cool to room temperature.
3. Beat 1 egg in a small bowl and set aside for assembly.
4. Position a lumpia wrapper on your work surface in front of you like a diamond, where the point is facing you. Place 2 Tbsp of the filling near the bottom of the diamond. Lift the corner nearest you and wrap it around the filling. Bring the east and west corners towards the center, while brushing the northern corner with the egg mixture. Roll the lumpia up tight like a burrito. Repeat.
5. Fry what you're going to eat and store the rest of the lumpia in the freezer.
1. Cast iron pan with 2" of frying oil, over medium-high heat. Gently add lumpia two or three at a time and fry until lightly golden brown, about 5-8 minutes.
2. Remove from heat and place on a wire rack to drain before serving.
Mix white vinegar with salt, pepper, minced garlic, and touch of sugar.