Ending the Summer with Summer Rolls

Tomorrow is the first day of Autumn! It seemed appropriate to wish summer farewell by making Vietnamese inspired summer rolls to end the season. I’ll have to come up with another one to welcome the Fall! 🙂  This appetizer is a very popular one served in most Vietnamese restaurants. They are made with sheets of rice paper softened in water and used to wrap ingredients such as cooked shrimp, rice noodles, herbs, and vegetables. It’s easy to make after a little practice in rolling, but just so you know, this post is a version of my mom’s cooking. We like to eat them with homemade fish sauce as opposed to the traditional peanut sauce. If you’d like something closer to the original recipe, you can try Chowhound’s recipe with peanut sauce.
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To begin, you’ll need the following items:

Spring Roll Skin – this is the package I used

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Rice Noodles / Rice Sticks 

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Pork (Cook in boiling water with salt for a few minutes until done)
Shrimp (Cook in boiling water and simmer for 2 minutes)

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Romaine Lettuce

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First, put a sheet of the spring roll skin into lukewarm water for 7-10 seconds. It should be firm and not soggy – the longer you put it, the easier the sheet will break!

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Then put any of the ingredients you choose in the middle of the sheet. I like to put 2 shrimps facing down, lettuce, rice noodles, and then another layer of shrimp and pork on top.  Slowly roll the sheet over the ingredients, squeeze and fold in the sides, then roll the rest slowly until you get to the other end. Pull gently as you roll to unfold the wrinkles.  Put them on a plate with a damp cloth over the finished ones so that they stay moist.

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My mom created her own sauce when I was young and till this day, I prefer it over the traditional peanut sauce. It’s really simple to make. Just pour about one tablespoon of fish sauce into a bowl. (She uses this brand in the photo below.) Whisk it with 3 lemons, lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and 1 tablespoon of water. Chop some carrots and place it in for a more fresh sauce. Dip the summer rolls in and enjoy! 🙂

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As always, thanks for reading!  xoxo

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