April 05, 2021
By Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley
I first made a variation of these egg rolls years ago. I was working near Philadelphia and while out to dinner with coworkers one night, I discovered fried Philly cheesesteak egg rolls: hot and cheesy, yet much lighter and pleasantly crispy compared to a giant hoagie. So, when I got home, I made wild duck “cheesesteak” egg rolls, and it has been a hit since.
This is a versatile recipe. You can use just about any kind of meat you can think of. I used ground venison because it’s easy but shaved/thinly sliced meat is more traditional. If you like, add finely chopped green pepper to the sauté. I chose to keep it simple—the spice will come from the dipping sauce. The shredded cabbage and carrot in this recipe are more Asian than Philly.
Aside from mozzarella, melty cheeses such as provolone, fontina and Gruyere are delicious too. But if you want to stay classic, better stick with American cheese and provolone. I wouldn’t bother with Cheeze Whiz. You can try it, but that just seems like a mess. Let me know if you find out.
Serves: 4-6 (Makes about 15 egg rolls.)
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
- 1 pound ground venison
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 green onions, all parts chopped
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Handful of morel mushrooms, finely chopped
- Handful of coleslaw salad mix/mixture of shredded cabbage and carrot
- 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 3 cups ketchup
- 2 tablespoons powdered mustard
- Half cup brown sugar
- Tabasco sauce to taste
- 1 package egg roll wrappers
- Frying oil
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When oil begins to shimmer, add venison and brown, breaking up the meat with wooden spoon. Then add chopped green onion, chopped mushrooms and coleslaw mix. Sauté until cabbage and carrot have wilted. Mix in Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to taste. If there’s a lot of moisture from the meat, cook longer to reduce. You want this meat mixture to be fairly dry.
- Set venison mixture aside to cool completely. Once cool, mix in shredded mozzarella cheese.
- Meanwhile, make the dipping sauce by combining ketchup, powdered mustard, brown sugar and Tabasco sauce. Set aside until ready to serve.
- Pour water into a small bowl. Assemble egg rolls: lay an egg roll wrap in front of you on a dry, clean surface so that it looks like a diamond with one corner pointing toward you. Place a moderate amount of the meat and cheese mixture along the middle of the wrap and then tightly fold the bottom corner over the filling. With your fingers, wet the two corners to the left and right with the water and fold those over. Wet the top corner and roll neatly to seal. Repeat with the rest of the egg rolls. Set aside and cover with a tea towel. (Keep the rest of the unused wrappers covered with a tea towel or plastic wrap while you work to prevent them from drying out.)
- Heat frying oil to 325-350 degrees Fahrenheit. Fry egg rolls seam-side down first until golden brown and then turn over to brown the other side. Drain before serving and keep warm. Fry in batches -- do not overcrowd the pan.
- Serve egg rolls with the dipping sauce. Egg rolls will be hot!