When you think of Asian cuisine what comes to mind? Noodles and rice, spicy chicken and sushi for sure, but I’ll bet egg rolls are near the top of the list as well. Crunchy and filled with cabbage, meat and spices, egg rolls have in many ways transcended their restaurant origins and you can find them all over the place now. But did you know the egg roll is not an authentic Asian food?
The egg roll, like so much of what makes American culture awesome, is the result of a marriage between two cultures. In this case, Asian recipes and American taste. From what I’ve read, there is an actual egg roll with roots in China, but the crispy treat we enjoy in the States is based on a Chinese food item called the spring roll. The original American egg roll is said to have originated in New York City sometime in the 1930s.
The egg roll might not be authentic Asian eating, but it’s still delicious. It’s standard fare as a side order for almost any Chinese dish. The River Valley is home to a restaurant that makes some delicious egg rolls. In fact, they’ve been called the best in the state.
Nothing Fancy is found in the heart of the Russellville City Mall, and they offer egg rolls as a stand alone, and egg rolls playing a few other roles in other dishes. I recommend their egg roll salad.
It’s crumbled egg roll sitting on a bed of noodles and greens with a side of, what else — more egg rolls. You can choose from pork, shrimp or tofu. Cover it all with some sauce and enjoy.
And I guarantee you won’t care a bit about where it was invented.