The tastiest, most comforting dishes often are the simplest. Evolving from the Chinese spring roll, lumpia became a cherished traditional dish in the Philippines. There are many variations, but the usual ingredients are a flour or rice wrapper that is stuffed with various meats and vegetables, sealed with an egg wash and fried until crisp.
Estrellita means “little star,” and the little star of the Grant Park restaurant by that name is lumpia, made from a family recipe. The crepe-like skin gets stuffed with Angus beef, chopped green beans, bean sprouts, celery and onion. The cigar-shaped delicacies are rolled tightly, with the ends tucked in neatly, and then they are fried to golden perfection. (You will cherish each flaky bit on the plate.)
It’s Philippine finger food, but it also can be a meal. The filling has a savory richness, as well as a satisfying crunch. For extra tang, the rolls are served with a spicy soy vinegar that enhances the savory meat and veggie mix while balancing the oil with acidity.