I don't know if I mentioned before that Vietnam is my favorite country in the world I've visited, partially because of the food and partially because of the people! Well I was introduced to so many new flavors/foods on my trip to Vietnam, but one thing that stands out from memory has to be fresh spring rolls!
I remember even exactly where I came upon them for the very first time. It was in a cute little restaurant in the little tailoring town of Hoi An. It was along the river and the restaurant came recommended to us by travelers we had met in our hotel. We had been in Vietnam 2-3 weeks at this stage and at every meal we always ordered spring rolls, the gorgeous small deep fried morsels of heaven!!! Here they asked did we want fresh spring rolls and to me that meant freshly made, not frozen. I remember being embarrassed when the fresh spring rolls and I ask why they weren't cooked!!!
Now I'm on the lookout on every Asian menu for fresh spring rolls!!! They are divine and not to mention so healthy. It's such a shame down here in southern Ireland there are no Vietnamese restaurants. But luckily my local supermarket just started to stock the rice paper wrappers, so now I can make them myself any time I want them
Makes 10 spring rolls
- 2 chicken breasts, cut into thin strips and poached. (or leftover roast chicken is great)
- 1 mango, cut into thin strips
- 100g of thin rice noodles (soaked in boiled water for 10 minutes)
- 10-20 mint leaves
- 10 rice paper discs
Peanut Dipping Sauce
- 2 tbsp of peanut butter
- 1 tbsp of hoisin sauce
- 1 tbsp of soy sauce
- 1 tsp of chilli paste
- 1 crushed garlic clove
- 1 tsp of tomato paste
- water to thin the sauce to desired consistency
- First make the sauce. Add all the sauce ingredients to a pan and bring to the boil, add water to give you the consistency you require.
- To assemble the spring rolls, have all your ingredients lined up assembly-line style.
- Drain the noodles well, and ensure the chicken is seasoned.
- Take a wide shallow bowl and fill it with water.
- Take 1 rice paper disc at a time, soak it in the water for 10 seconds or until it become pliable.
- Lay it on a flat surface in front of you.
- Add a strip of chicken, mango and some noodles to the bottom quarter of the rice paper. Top it with mint leaves and roll it away from you tucking the end under the ingredients wrapped.
- Take in both sides of the roll to the centre and then continue to roll up till the end.
- Place on a plate and cover with wet chicken paper, whilst you repeat the process with the remaining 9 spring rolls.
- Serve immediately with the dipping sauce.
Tip: You can use any fillings you wish, i.e prawns or pork and carrots or red pepper strips. Mix and matching is great!