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Today I went to the doctor for a check up and I had to write out my occupation.


A few years ago I was a Barista and it was so strange to admit my occupation.  This was after graduating from college and landing my dream job, just to be laid off months later with the recession.  I wasn’t prepared would be an understatement.

Each occupation comes with it’s set of preconceived notions.  A few friends of mine are artists and it can be easier to consider myself completely different than to actually try to understand them.


This blog is part of a journey to understand who I am; something that was so malleable in my early 20’s now feels so rigid.  Just as our bodies get stiff with inactivity, I am feeling that my career has become stiff and needs to be massaged; new exercises need to be put into practice.

My friend over at The Talking Kitchen turned me onto spring roll wrappers.  You can purchase them at your local Chinese market or surprisingly Whole Foods; 99 Ranch Market is my favorite for spices and meat.  If you thought the samples at Cosco are amazing, you HAVE to get samples at an Asian market.  It is an adventure!


I thought they were rice paper, but the ingredients listed are: flour, salt, and water.  So, if you only eat Gluten free look for rice paper on the label.

What I love is that the possibilities are endless.  It’s a buffet in a wrap!  You can even roll them in olive oil and bake them at 400 deg. F for an extra crispy version.


  • 6-8 spring roll wrappers
  • 1/4 lb of ahi tuna
  • 2 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs sesame oil
  • 1 Tbs Sambal
  • 1 Tbs expeller pressed canola oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 green onions chopped
  • 2 cups purple cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced if large
  • 1 package sprouts
  • handful of dandelion greens, chopped with stems set aside
  • sesame seeds
  • additional soy sauce, sesame oil, and sesame seeds for dipping

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1.    Make or buy sambal.  If this is not available use the following to taste:

  • 1/2 fresh chili minced, 1/4 inch piece of ginger minced, 1 tsp of lime juice, 1 small garlic clove minced, 1/2 Tbs rice vinegar, 1 tsp honey or agave nectar when preparing the marinade.

2.    Prepare the pickled cabbage:

  • Heat the vinegar in a pan over medium-high heat.  Add the sugar and salt and simmer until they dissolve.  Put the cabbage in a large bowl, cover with the vinegar mixture, and let sit for at least 30 minutes.  Drain the cabbage and store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

3.    Slice the tuna carefully into cubes.  In a medium bowl mix the tuna, soy sauce, sesame oil, sambal, and green onions.  Marinate for              30 minutes.

4.    Saute the mushrooms in the oil over medium-high heat.  When the oil is absorbed, turn the heat to medium.  Add the stems and incorporate with the mushrooms.  Lay the remaining dandelion greens over the mushrooms and incorporate after about 15 seconds.  Turn the heat to low and cover, stirring occasionally until the desired tenderness is reached.

5.   When ready to prepare the wraps, lay out 3 large plates.  One for wetting the wrap, one for preparing the wrap, and one for laying out the wraps.  The 1st plate needs enough lip to hold water but not damage the paper.  Line the 3rd plate (or baking sheet) with oil to prevent the wraps from sticking.  Rotate the paper in the water until soft and then transfer to the 2nd plate.  Add all the fillings and sesame seeds if desired.  Roll up the wrap, folding in the sides like a Chipotle Burrito.

6.   For the sauce, mix 1 Tbs soy sauce with 1/2 Tbs sesame oil and add sesame seeds.  Serve with Sriracha or Chili Garlic Sauce if desired.