These light and healthy Vietnamese-influenced summer rolls are filled with cooked shrimp, rice noodles, and plenty of fresh herbs and vegetables for flavor and crunch. Once your ingredients are prepped, the rolling fun begins as sheets of rice paper are softened in water and used for the wrappers. Dipped in a spicy peanut sauce, these rolls are a great hot-weather appetizer or light lunch. If your appetite is piqued, learn more about Vietnamese food (and prepare to get even hungrier).
What to buy: We like to use natural peanut butter in this recipe. If you use the conventional kind, omit the sugar called for in the sauce. Look for hoisin sauce and chile-garlic paste in the Asian section of your supermarket. For the chile paste, we prefer the one made by Huy Fong Foods (with the rooster on the jar!). The rice stick noodles and rice paper wrappers can be found in most Asian grocery stores. For the wrappers, we like the Red Rose brand.
Game plan: Be sure to have all your ingredients ready and easily accessible when you start to roll, and give yourself plenty of time (and counter space) to make these. Also be sure to have a few extra rice paper wrappers on hand—it may take a few tries before you’re rolling like a pro.
Store the summer rolls in a dish or plastic container that’s roomy enough to hold them without their touching. Place a damp paper towel in the bottom of the container to keep the rolls moist. Cover tightly with plastic wrap.
You can make the peanut sauce a day ahead. Just keep it refrigerated in a covered container. Let it sit for a bit at room temperature before serving.
This recipe was featured as part of our summer no-cook recipes, as well as our chile pepper recipe slideshow and our picnic recipe slideshow. For summer roll/banh mi mashups, get our Rice Paper Banh Mi with Lemongrass Pork recipe, our Rice Paper Banh Mi with Five-Spice Chicken recipe, and our Rice Paper Banh Mi with Pork Meatballs recipe too.
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For the summer rolls:
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