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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

Lumpiang Sariwa #FoodieReads

Only one of my aunts - and I have a lot of aunties! - made fresh lumpia (instead of fried) and I asked my mom about them. She had no idea how to make it, so I improvised. The wrappers (Filipino crêpes) weren't quite right, but these were a hit.

On the Page

I was inspired to make lumpiang sariwa after reading Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala.

This is the first in a series of cozy mysteries set in Tita Rosie's kitchen. As the first book, this introduces a cast of quirky characters that are always part of an extended Filipino family. I found myself simultaneously chuckling with her descriptions and cringing as I mapped which of my relatives would be in that role.

Let me set the scene: Lila Macapagal returns home to recover from a horrible breakup and it feels like the usual rom-com tropes: Lila needs to help save Tita Rosie's failing restaurant; she has to navigate (or hide from) her meddling, matchmaking aunties who smother her with support and judgment. Then her ex-boyfriend, who is an infamously harsh food critic, dies at her family's restaurant, this goes from rom-com to murder mystery.

This was a fun, breezy read. I will say that the amount of Tagalog peppered into the prose didn't bother me. But I can see how if you are unfamiliar with the language, that might interrupt the flow of the story.

I won't say anything else about the plot. If you are looking a quick, fun read with a lot of delicious food, this is it!

On the Plate

Given that the setting is a Filipino restaurant, there was so much food inspiration. Even her dog's name made me think about heading into the kitchen; his name is Longganisa, a small, spicy sausage. It's perfect for a Dachshund, right?

Lila gets creative while using Filipino ingredients and flavors. "I refilled their glasses of honey calamansi iced tea and delighted in their compliments. This refreshment was one of my concoctions—traditional, but with a bit of a twist. Just like all my creations."

She made some cookies that both intrigued me and made me wince. "I hurried back to the kitchen to grab the batch of ube crinkles I’d baked earlier that morning. I piled the cookies, their lovely violet color peeping through a light coating of powdered sugar, on a plate. I studied the offering, then added a small bowl of vanilla ice cream as well as a serving of my ube halaya, the purple-yam jam I’d used to create the cookies, to the dish. Perfect." Ube is one of those things that has bulld0zed into the mainstream and is used to make things vividly purple. I love Trader Joe's, but ube overpowered with cinnamon to make it palatable for most people is just plain wrong. Whenever we try the products, we just want to stay: stop. Please stop. I would try Lila's crinkles though.

But what inspired me into the kitchen was this passage: "My desert island food was just as versatile: crepes. Both savory and sweet, from the classic Filipino lumpiang sariwa to the simplicity of a sprinkle of sugar and squeeze of lemon, I couldn’t get enough of them. Maybe I could convince my family to do a Filipino-themed crêpes bar on Sundays. Might be a good way to pick up new business."

Lumpiang sariwa is a fresh - not fried - lumpia. I decided to give it a try. These weren't perfect and, as D said, we made overstuffed them and made them American-sized, but the flavors were exactly what I wanted.


Crêpes or Wrappers

  • 3/4 cup flour

  • 1/4 cup corn starch

  • 2 large eggs

  • 2 Tablespoons oil (I used canola oil)

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 1½ cups milk


you can use whatever you want, but this is what we used...

  • cooked shrimp

  • steamed cubed sweet potatoes

  • carrot ribbons

  • fresh bean sprouts

  • blanched green beans

  • diced red bell peppers

  • chopped green onions


I like a peanut butter-based sauce, but I don't know how traditional that is, but we love it.

  • 1-1/2 cup organic creamy peanut butter

  • 1/2 cup organic coconut milk

  • 3 Tablespoons water

  • 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

  • 3 Tablespoons soy sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon hot sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger root

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


Crêpes or Wrappers

Whisk all of the ingredients together until lump-free. Let sit for at least 10 minutes. Heat a large flat-bottom pan and rub the bottom with butter. Pour the batter in the middle of the pan and quickly make a tilting motion to distribute the batter all over the pan. The goal: have as thin a batter layer as possible.

Cook until the crêpe is a bit stiff and flip over, cooking for another minute The crêpe should be lightly browned on both sides. Repeat till all the batter is used.


In a small mixing bowl, blend all of the ingredients together until smooth. Stir in the cilantro just before serving. Set aside.


Place crêpe on a plate or cutting board. Fill with whatever you desire. Roll up the crêpe. Drizzle with sauce and garnish with torn cilantro and chopped peanuts. Serve immediately.

I am linking post to our online #FoodieReads group. Here are the other readers' books for July.

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2 comentários

Wendy Klik
Wendy Klik
05 de ago. de 2023

I love savory crepes and I think these sound wonderful.

Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
07 de ago. de 2023
Respondendo a

I love savory crepes, too. These are delicious!

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