Filipino Lumpia with a Garlic and Black Pepper Vinegar Sauce


  • 1/2 lb ground beef (omit for vegetarian)
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 heads of minced garlic
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup (2 to 3 oz) chicken or vegetarian stock
  • 1 1/2 large cabbages, shredded
  • 2 large potatoes, grated
  • 2 small Japanese yams or sweet potatoes, grated
  • 2 or 3 carrots, grated or julienned
  • Cilantro or parsley (optional)
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • lumpia roll wrappers (or spring roll wrappers) – make sure they are defrosted
  • oil for deep frying

Garlic and Black Pepper Vinegar Sauce

  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup (4 oz) white vinegar
  • black pepper


  1. Make the sauce first by combing all three ingredients. Put as much black pepper as you like, but if you think it’s enough, it probably isn’t.
  2. In a very large sauté pan or wok over medium-high heat, sauté the ground beef in a little oil. After a few minutes add the onions and the garlic.
  3. Continue to cook for about 5 or 6 minutes, then add the ground black pepper and stock. Next, add all the grated vegetables, except for the cabbage, and stir well. Keep cooking for a few more minutes.
  4. Next, add the cabbage, and cook until it’s cooked through, but not soft.
  5. Allow the filling to cool before filling the wrappers.  Have a little bowl or ramekin of water nearby to seal them. Place some filling below the middle part of the wrapper placed with a point towards you. Fold the bottom up onto the filling. Fold the left and right sides on top of the bottom fold. Making sure the filling is tight against the bottom, start rolling away from you, tucking in any part of the wrapper that wants to go its own way. Dampen the top edges of the wrapper. Finish rolling the lumpia and press gently to seal the end.
  6. If you have a helper, it’s a big plus as someone can fry the lumpia while you wrap them. You don’t want to make all of them and then fry them as the dampness of the filling will seep into the wrapper and you’ll have a terrible mess in your pan.
  7. Repeat as needed to use the rest of the filling.
  8. Heat the oil and test it with the edge of one of the lumpia. It should start bubbling immediately. When the oil is hot enough, start frying a few at a time.
  9. Fry them until they are golden brown, trying to only turn them once. Remove from the oil (drain well) and place on a paper towel-lined plate or platter.

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