These fresh spring rolls are healthy and delicious. They make a great nutritious meal or snack.
Between the entertainment award shows and football play-offs, we’ve been spending quite a lot of time in front of the TV and have needed a lot of munching viewing food. To keep things healthy after all the overeating from the holidays, I decided to make Vietnamese spring rolls.
They are quite easy to make, though making them as pretty as the ones served at restaurants is quite challenging. I first learned how to make them from my brother’s girlfriend. I wish she was around this weekend when I tried making them again on my own. She made it look so easy! I, on the other hand, bludgeoned quite a few wrappers before sort of getting the hang of it.
For the filling, you’ll need cooked medium-sized shrimp, cooked rice vermicelli noodles, green leaf lettuce, fresh Thai basil, and rice wrappers. Other ingredients I’ve seen included are shredded carrots, cucumbers, bean sprouts, and cilantro.
The rice wrappers can be found in a lot of Asian supermarkets. I got mine at Ranch 99.
First, prep all your inside filling ingredients. Shrimp are sliced in half length-wise and each roll will need about 3 slices of shrimp. You’ll also need to boil your noodles and run them under cold water to cool and keep them from getting stuck. Basil leaves should be plucked off the stems; I used about 6 leaves per roll.
Once your ingredients are ready, prepare a cutting board or other flat surface so that you can make your rolls.
Second, you dip your rice paper into a bowl of water, make sure all of the wrapper touches water. Then lay it out on a flat surface. Don’t let the wrapper get too wet and soft or it will be very hard to work with. If you let it sit a minute after it is dipped in the water, it should become pliable and soft.
Take a handful of noodles, about 6 basil leaves and any other ingredients you are using for filling except shrimp and place inside a piece of green leaf lettuce. Roll it up so that the filling stays within the leaf.
Then take your shrimp and put it directly face-down on the wrapper, leaving about 2 inches from the top. In the photo, I placed the shrimp on top but later on I actually found that for the shrimp to be more visible in the roll, it’s actually best to put the shrimp down directly on the wrapper face-down and then put your lettuce roll on top of the shrimp.
Fold the sides of the wrapper into the lettuce roll. Take the top section and tuck and wrap it around the lettuce roll, so all the fillings are secure. Then begin rolling your spring roll until you run out of wrapper. The wrapper should be sticky enough that it should all stick together. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
When you are finished, you can make the peanut dipping sauce and then serve the rolls. Please note, these rolls should be consumed the same day. Once placed in the fridge, the wrapper looses its elasticity and becomes quite brittle.
Fresh Vietnamese Shrimp Spring Rolls
- 6 rice wrappers
- 3 medium-sized cooked shrimp sliced in half lengthwise
- 6 leaves green leaf lettuce
- 1 cup cooked rice vermicelli
- 36 leaves fresh Thai basil
- 4 tbsp hoisin sauce
- 4 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- Cook and prepare filling ingredients. Set aside. Prepare a clean flat surface for rolling spring rolls.
- Fill a large bowl with warm water. Dip rice paper carefully, until the entire wrap has touched the water. Then lay it flat on cutting board or other flat rolling surface. Make sure not to soak the rice paper too long or it will be too soft to maneuver.
- Place 3 shrimp, face-down directly onto rice wrapper, about 2 inches from the top. Place handful of vermicelli and 6 basil leaves into lettuce and roll up like you're making a lettuce roll. Place lettuce roll on top of shrimp.
- Fold ends of rice wrapper onto lettuce. Then take top portion and tuck it over the lettuce roll so all ingredients are enfolded in the rice wrapper. Then continue to roll up until you run out of wrapper. Repeat with remaining wrappers and ingredients.
- To make the sauce, combine all ingredients and mix. If you want a thinner sauce, you can thin it with some water.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.