Type of mint leaves used for Thai Summer Rolls
- queenscook Jul 22, 2011 03:53 PM
I'm not sure how ignorant a question this is, but as a kosher-keeper, I haven't ever had Thai food. I am following a recipe for Summer Rolls that calls for mint leaves, but there are many types of mint. I grow at least six types on my small backporch windowbox "garden." The question, of course, is which is best for this recipe. I have a few that are more pepperminty, one spearmint, and one called orange-mint. My inclination is that the spearmint would go with the other flavors best, and when I see mint sold in supermarkets, it generally seems to be spearmint. Any advice from any experts out there? Also, I am growing Thai basil. The particular recipe I'm following doesn't call for it specifically, but would it fit in, tastewise? Thanks.
I know where you are coming queenscook.... but spearmint or perhaps lemmonmint would be fabulous... Thai basil would also be a perfect.
BTW many types of siracha and hot suaces are kosher, and rice noodles too, so be adventurous!
Spearmint is what it should be, though if you ONLY have peppermint, it works ok when cut fine. Basil works with mint very well.
Follow the force, Luke ... I mean Queenscook. I have no idea what they use in Thailand, but what I've had at every Thai restaurant is spearmint as far as I can tell, and that's what I grow in my garden and use in spring rolls. But that doesn't mean it's the same mint they use in Thailand, and that orange-mint sounds tempting. I think you should feel free to experiment. Make a few with each and let your guests judge.
Spearmint is great. So is Thai basil if you want to add it. If you have coriander, it's a classic to add. Laotian summer roll (make your own platters) will usually have these herbs at our house: spearmint, coriander, swordgrass (because I love swordgrass but it's not exactly traditional), sometimes shiso (because my mom grows it), vietnamese mint especially if there is pork, chicken or fish in the roll is nice...
Wanted to thank all who replied, and particularly for the quick response, which allowed me to make the rolls for my Friday night sabbath meal. We didn't have guests, only my husband and myself, but he really liked them. I used the spearmint, thai basil, and lemon basil. I haven't quite got the soaking and rolling of the rice wrappers down pat yet--some looked better than others, but I'll be giving it another shot again, I'm sure.
Cheesehead--I haven't seen too many kosher bottles of the sauces. I have one old bottle of sriracha, but when I use it up, that's it; the company (an all kosher company called Gefen), doesn't make it anymore. Other than the "rooster" brand, which has a "controversial" certification (i.e.: some rabbis hold that it's reliable; others think it is not), I don't think I've seen any others. I have seen a number of acceptably kosher Thai chili sauces which are a bit sweeter, and I could use them by spicing them up with some cayenne or a Tabasco-like sauce, but if you can name any brands you've seen, I can be on the lookout for them.
And Zeldog--maybe next time I'll put some of the orange-mint in.