There is nothing quite as joyous and beautiful as catching up with your best friend; while it has been about five years since we last saw Brucey, it felt like no time had passed at all!
After meeting Bruce aka Brucey, Steeny, Springo or pal, in school our bond seemed unbreakable, with he and Annelie touring the bar circuit of New Jersey while I did everything in my power to bring down their rivals via torrid affairs.
While I was successful in ruining many a career on the way to Bruce’s success (without Bruce knowing, he enjoyed competition), our relationship hit a rough patch in 1984 when he invited (then) two-bit floozy Courteney Cox (we are friends, now) up on stage during his film-clip for Dancing in the Dark.
As you would expect, I ran straight to the tabloids to punish him for this indiscretion resulting in an eight-year feud and a string of voodoo and/or arson attempts near the Jersey shorelines.
Wanting to make amends after a stint in rehab, as well as the completion of a court-ordered anger management course, I reached out to Bruce and once again became his muse … eventually leading to an Academy Award for the song The Streets of Philadelphia.
We pulled up to the airport to pick-up Bruce to see him standing out front looking all dreamy, like the cover of Born on the USA – I mean, we would have taken him home and fought to the death for him, even if he wasn’t our friend.
I don’t know what it is about reminiscing about school, but it is something that definitely needs liquor, which in turns means you need drinking snacks at the ready – obviously our delicious Bruce Springsteen Rolls made the menu!
These little snacks pack the right amount of sweetness and spice and are the perfect accompaniment for an afternoon of being serenaded by your close friend over a beer.
Bruce Springsteen Roll
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sake
2 tbsp oyster sauce
freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp cornflour
2 tbsp cooking oil, aka anything with a low smoke-point
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
3 shallots, finely sliced
2 carrots, grated
½ head of chinese cabbage, shredded
1 red chilli, finely sliced
100g shitake mushrooms, finely sliced
500g chicken mince
50g vermicelli noodles, soaked in water and drained
3 tbsp toasted peanuts, crushed
1 tbsp five spice powder
50 spring roll wrappers, defrosted
extra cooking oil, for brushing
Combine the soy, sake, oyster sauce, pepper and the teaspoon of cornflour in a measuring jug; leave aside.
Heat a large pan over high heat, adding in the oil and swirling when hot. Quickly add the shallots, garlic and ginger and toss for 30 seconds, taking care not to burn them. Stirring well, add in the carrots, cabbage, chilli and mushroom, before reducing the heat to medium-high. Stir fry the vegetables for 2 minutes, or until the carrots have softened.
Remove cooked vegetables to a dish and add the chicken mince to the pan, breaking up the meat as you brown it. When the chicken is done, add the soy liquid, noodles and vegetables to the pan and combine. Remove from heat and allow to cool. When cooled, drain out any liquid.
Preheat oven to 180C and line two baking sheets.
Open the packet of spring roll wrappers, covering with a just damp towel to prevent drying out. Pour some cold water into a glass for brushing.
Place a wrapper out on the bench, add a tablespoon of the mixture in the middle at one end in a cigar shape. Roll wrapper over to cover the filling, fold both sides in and roll the spring roll up (this video has another wrapping technique, if I make no sense). Brush with water and place on baking sheet, covering with another just damp cloth.
Repeat the process until you run out of wrappers or filling.
Once done, remove the cloth, brush all of the rolls with oil and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
Devour with your favourite condiment, trying to avoid flinging sriracha all over your kitchen when shaking the bottle. Unless these are for a Halloween party in which case, boom, instant bloodbath decoration!