Whenever I go to Vietnamese restaurants, I always have an internal struggle between ordering the fried eggrolls and the fresh spring rolls. Usually, the fried ones win, but since the weather is warming up, this seems more fitting.
And since this month's Side Dish Showdown has a theme of Spring, this seems fitting. Check out Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice and the end of the month to see some other Spring inspired side dishes.
- Rice paper
- Rice noodles
- Thinly sliced meat (I used eye of round that was pre-sliced for hot pot purposes)
- Peanut butter
- Fish sauce
- Crushed peanuts
- Chili sauce (optional)
- Boil the rice noodles until fully cooked, then rinse it with cold water and set aside.
- Slice the lettuce into quarter inch strips and set aside.
- Cook the shrimp, then cool it, slice them in half if desired and set aside.
- Cook the meat, cool it, and set aside.
- Fill a pan large enough to fit the rice paper with water.
- For each roll, quickly dip two sheets of rice paper in the water (on both sides) and stack them on top of each other, flat on a cutting board. On my first roll, I let the paper soak in the water until it was fully soft. That was too soft and the rice paper fell apart. On my second, I just dipped it quickly, but found that it was still not enough because it'd rip when I tried rolling the spring rolls. Then I tried to dip two quickly and found that was perfect. You can experience yourself too, to see what works best for you.
- Lay a line of shrimp (pretty side down if you sliced them in half) on the softened rice paper.
- Lay a line of the meat on top of the shrimp.
- Lay a line of noodles on top of the meat.
- Lay a line of lettuce on top of the noodles.
- Fold in the edges and wrap up the filling into the spring roll.
- Repeat for each roll.
- Scoop some peanut butter into a bowl and add a bit of water.
- Pop it in the microwave for a few seconds to help melt the peanut butter.
- Stir the peanut butter/water mixture until smooth.
- Add hoisin sauce and just a dash of fish sauce to taste (a little goes a looong way, so don't add too much).
- Add some chili sauce if desired.
- Stir everything together until it achieves the taste and consistency you desire.
- Top with crushed peanuts and dip spring rolls in the sauce.