Since Chinese New Year, Peter and I have both been swamped with work, work related travel, and wedding prep and our eating habits and exercise routines have certainly taken a hit. So with Peter back in Nepal recently I decided to take the time to sit down and plan some lighter recipes and meal ideas for the next few months.
If you know me, you know that I’m not usually drawn to light meals, but I can also tell such a difference in my energy levels and my mood when I’m not weighed down by overly indulgent meals every day.
These Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls are fresh, tasty, easy to put together and make the perfect light appetizer or snack.
I filled mine with thin slices of beef, slivers of carrots and cucumber, shredded lettuce, spring onion, and fresh coriander and mint. You’ll love the combination of different textures and fragrances in these rice paper rolls.
To wrap the rice paper rolls, dip each individual wrapper in a large pan or bowl of water until it is just softened. Be careful not to wait until the wrappers are too soft or you’ll risk having them turn into a pile of mush. Once you remove the wrapper from the water, place it on a flat surface and in less than a minute you’ll see that the wrapper has continued to soften to just the right texture.
I worked with each wrapper individually rather than softening them all together as a batch.
Once you have your rice paper wrapper ready, fill it with the vegetables, herbs, shrimp or meat of your choice and roll the ingredients up using a similar method as to when we made our Filipino turon.
To serve, I mixed together a quick simple dipping sauce of chilis, garlic, soy sauce, and fish sauce. For extra spice, I threw in a dash of the extra hot chili sauce I brought back from Sapa in Northern Vietnam.
- 1 tbsp oil
- 0.5 lb of thinly sliced beef
- large bowl of water
- package of 8 rice paper wrappers
- 1 carrot, cut in to thin slices
- 1 cucumber, cut in to thin slices
- lettuce, shredded
- spring onion, chopped
- 3 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 spicy chili, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- In a large pan, heat oil over medium heat
- Add beef and stir until cooked through (~2-3 minutes)
- Set aside to cool
- Prepare a large bowl of cool water
- Dip each dry rice paper wrappers in to water until just softened
- Lay wrapper on flat surface
- Place carrot, cucumber, and lettuce about 3/4 away from the bottom of the wrapper
- Add beef, spring onion, mint, and coriander
- Fold in sides of wrapper and tightly roll contents until sealed
- Repeat for remaining rice paper wrappers
- In a small bowl, mix fish sauce, soy sauce, chilis, and garlic