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Popiah – Hokkien-style Fresh Spring Rolls Recipe

Popiah - Hokkien-style Fresh Spring Rolls Recipe

Popiah – Hokkien-style Fresh Spring Rolls Recipe

Hokkien-style Popiah are normally made using very thin fresh wrappers made from rice and wheat flour and water. Assemble Popiah just before serving, as otherwise they go soggy, or place all the prepared ingredients on the table and allow your guests to create their own in an informal gathering. A Popiah party is always a big hit!

Ingredients :

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 1 medium bangkuang (jicama) (about 600 g/ 20 oz), peeled and sliced into matchsticks
  • 1/4 teaspoon five spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 3/teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 6 soft lettuce leaves, washed and dried
  • 1 tablespoon sweet black sauce
  • 10 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 red finger-length chillies, deseeded and ground to a paste with 1/4 teaspoon salt, or 1 red finger-length chilli, sliced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2/3 cup (50 g) bean sprouts, rinsed and blanched in boiling water
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) cooked crabmeat
  • 250 g (8 oz) medium fresh prawns, peeled, deveined, halved lengthwise and poached for 1 minute
  • 1 hard-boiled egg, halved lengthwise then sliced crosswise
  • 1 sweet dried Chinese sausage (lap cheong), thinly sliced and blanched in hot water

Popiah Wrappers

  • 1/2 cup (75 g) rice flour
  • 11/2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon oil
  • 1 cup (250 ml) water

Method :

  1. First prepare the Popiah Wrappers by sifting the flours and salt together into a bowl. In another bowl, mix the eggs, oil and water. Add the flour mixture a little at time, mixing well to obtain a smooth batter. Set the batter aside in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  2. Grease a nonstick pan with oil. Ladle 2 tablespoons of the batter onto the pan and swirl it quickly to make a very thin pancake. Cook over medium heat until the batter sets, about 2 minutes. Place the cooked wrapper on a plate. Repeat until all the batter is used up.
  3. To prepare the filling, heat the oil in a wok and stir-fry the garlic, shallots and bangkuang over medium heat for 5 minutes until the bangkuang is soft. Season with the five spice powder, sugar, salt and pepper. Set aside to cool.
  4. To assemble, place a fresh Popiah Wrapper on a plate. Place a lettuce leaf on the wrapper and smear a little of the sweet black sauce and minced garlic on it. Then add a little of the chilli paste or sliced chilli and shallot. Strain 2 heaping tablespoons of the bangkuang filling between two spoons to press out the liquid, and place it on the lettuce. Add a sprinkling of bean sprouts, crabmeat, prawns, egg and Chinese sausage. Tuck in the sides of the wrapper and roll it up firmly. Repeat with the rest of the wrappers and filling to make another 5 Popiah. Halve or slice each Popiah into 3 pieces and serve.

Note : If it’s too time-consuming to prepare fresh Popiah Wrappers, you may be able to find packets of Popiah Wrappers in the refrigerator or freezer section in some supermarkets. Or substitute Filipino lumpia wrappers lightly cooked in a nonstick pan with a little oil, or burrito wrappers. If you cannot find bangkuang (jicama), you may substitute a mixture of daikon radish and cabbage, both very thinly sliced.

Makes 6 Popiah
Preparation time : 35 mins + 10 mins assembling time
Cooking time : 45 mins


Source :
the food of Singapore
Simple Street Food Recipes from the Lion City
by David Wong & Djoko Wibisono
photos by Luca Invernizzi Tettoni
introduction by Lee Geok Boi


See also Singapore Cooking “Honey Barbecued Chicken Wings Recipe”