Spring rolls, are a Vietnamese delicacy traditionally prepared using pork, prawn, vegetables, bún (rice vermicelli), herbs and several other ingredients. All these ingredients are then wrapped in Vietnamese bánh tráng (also known as rice paper or cold roll). The dish is considered to be a widely consumed appetizer in Vietnamese restaurants.
Vietnamese spring rolls are also known as gỏi cuốn, which translates to salad rolls. There are many different variations of the Vietnamese spring rolls. Some of them include shrimp, fish, pan-fried seafood, beef, tofu (for vegetarians), grilled nem nướng sausages, braised pork and eggs instead of the standard fillings.
Origin & Cultural Significance
It is believed that the origin of Vietnamese spring rolls dates back to the time of king Nguyễn Huệ Quang Trung.
It was during a well-known battle when his people were constantly on the move and required “mobile” meals. It was then that they created the spring roll dish, as it was easy to consume on the go and the ingredients were also not heavy to take along.
- Rice vermicelli - 2 oz.
- Toasted sesame oil - 1 tsp.
- Cooked shrimp (peeled, deveined and sliced in half) - 8
- Fine sea salt - ¼ tsp.
- Torn butter lettuce (ribs removed) - 1 cup
- Red cabbage (thinly sliced) - 1 cup
- Carrots (peeled and sliced into strips with a julienne peeler) - 2
- Cucumber (sliced into strips with a julienne peeler) - 1
- Jalapeños (ribs and seeds removed, thinly sliced) - 2
- Green onions (thinly sliced) - ¼ cup
- Fresh cilantro (roughly chopped) - ¼ cup
- Fresh mint (roughly chopped) - ¼ cup
- Rice paper (spring roll wrappers) - 8 sheets
- Start by taking a medium-sized pot. Add water and bring it to a boil. Add the noodles and allow them to cook, just until al dente. Once done, drain the water, rinse the noodles under cool water, and transfer them back to the pot. Toss the noodles with the sesame oil and salt and keep them aside. Make sure the tossing part is done off the heat.
- Next, pour water into a shallow pan. Fold a lint-free tea towel in half and set it beside the dish. Remember to keep your prepared stuffing close at hand. Take the green onions, cilantro and mint. Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl.
- Now, take one rice paper, place it in the water and allow it to rest for approximately 20 seconds. Wait until the paper is flexible but not super floppy. Slowly, place it on the towel.
- Arrange a few pieces of butter lettuce, 2 shrimp halves, a small handful of
rice noodles, cabbage, some carrot stripes, cucumber and jalapeño on the paper. Remember to place the fillings in only the lower third of the paper, leaving about 1 inch of open paper around the ends. Add a generous amount of herb mix.
- Fold the lower end up over the stuffing, working your way up until the stuffing is completely enclosed. Fold over the short sides, similar to how we prepare a burrito. Last of all, roll it up.
- Repeat with the leftover ingredients and there you have it. Your Vietnamese spring rolls are ready to be served!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 177Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 179mgSodium: 893mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 21g