vietnamese spring rolls

its 3pm and my usual time for craving a snack. yesterday, it was spring rolls.

yes, i could have decided to venture to my local asian restaurant and pick some up for about $4, but no…i wanted to blog. and make my own.

about $30 in ingredients and an hour later, i immediately regretted my decision.

then i remembered, oh yeah – i gave up going out for dinner during the week (and boozing during the week) for lent. in an attempt to save money and be healthier. welp, there goes that.

i digress. this recipe is from mama le via phone and my memory of growing up and making them with the family at home. like a little asian assembly line – one dipping the wraps, a few putting in the ingredients, one wrapping them all up…and me eating them. they are my equivalent of an asian burrito.

there are also quite a few other good recipes, all pretty similar online, if you want to see how to add tofu or whatever nonsense you prefer in them.

vietnamese spring rolls

prep time: 30 minutes.

grocery store results

what you need (makes about 12)

  • jumbo shrimp, about half the bag or a good handful
  • pork shoulder or butt – 1/4 lb?
  • 5 lettuce leaves, chopped
  • handfuls of bean sprouts, cilantro, basil, and mint leaves, cucumber
  • rice wrappers (the kind i buy comes in 12)
  • handful of rice vermicelli
  • SAUCE: hoisin sauce, water, peanuts, sriracha (or you can google for the fish sauce route, but i’m a hoisin girl)

get it done:

  • boil some water, and add the pork in there for about 20 minutes until cooked through
  • when that’s finishing up, boil the shrimp as well until they have that bright orange color
  • you can cut them in half if the shrimp are too chubby, and slice the pork into cute little yummy strips
  • soak or boil the rice noodles for about 10 minutes and then shock them in cold water
  • start getting your veggies cleaned and ready, chopping up and slicing cucumbers
  • get a little station cleared up – any table or counter is fine – and get your ingredients in bowls and 3 small plates for your rice wrappers, and a dish for the complete asian burritos

asian burrito stations

  • get a large bowl and fill it with cold water
  • dip a wrapper in there until all of it has been wet, and then place on an empty plate for it to dry a bit
  • do this a few more times for the empty plates
    • (this will then give you enough time to go back and wrap when the paper is at the right consistency)
  • HOW TO WRAP: well don’t mind mine bc i like them fat and a bit on the messy side (i’m clearly not a perfectionist), but the way to do it is to fold up two sides and keep the ingredients on one end like so:

folding ninja

  • SAUCE:

    if you don't have this, go out and buy it now. $3 for asian spicy ketchup. it can go on EVERYTHING!

    • pour about two spoonfuls of hoisin sauce into a jar
    • mix in a sprinkle of water to dilute it a bit
    • smash some unsalted peanuts and throw them in there
    • add some sriracha goodness

at last

sidenote: please excuse blurry images (iphone camera at the moment…) and messy preparations. i’m still new at this! and i know i need to work on some presentation skills instead of focusing on getting this food in my belly.


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