Vietnamese summer rolls.
Made by me. In my own kitchen. I must admit I’m pretty impressed with myself.
I went to an Asian supermarket and everything.
They’re 74 calories a roll, too – perfect for 5:2 diet days. (Yes, I have two of those a week. But in my defence, I do stuff my face with croissants and Hula Hoops the rest of the time).
I got the recipe from Good Food magazine and I don’t know what came over me but all of a sudden I was in Hoo Hing on the north circular ransacking the aisles for 22-centimetre rice paper wrappers.
I also managed to get my mitts on rice noodles when I was there, the rice noodles that have eluded me every time I’ve ever walked into a Sainsbury’s.
Shopping mission completed, it was time to make food.
And here are the ingredients and instructions!
22-cm rice paper wrappers (why not aim for about 3 or 4 per person)
rice vermicelli noodles
iceberg lettuce, sliced into neat rectangles
cooked king prawns, halved
roast pork (if you’re a carnivore like Julian)
carrots, sliced into super-thin sticks (with Julienne peeler, an actual vegetable peeler thing, not my boyfriend, Julian – although if you do need Julian my boyfriend, and seeing as he did slice these ones very well, just give me a call and I’ll see if I can spare him).
cucumber, sliced into super-thin sticks
Delish dipping sauce
Juice of a lemon
Juice of a lime
3 tbsp fish sauce
2 tablespoons caster sugar
3 garlic cloves, chopped super-tiny
1 bird’s eye chilli, thinly sliced
1. First, boil a full kettle, tip into big glass bowl and pop in your vermicelli noodles – allow them to soak for 20 mins, or whatever your packet says
2. Get Julienning all your veggies and preparing your fillings
3. Make your sauce, just mix all of the above delish dipping sauce ingredients together
4. Once done and your noodles have soaked to the optimum length and been drained, it’s time to start wrapping
5. Use the same big glass (ceramic, plastic, whatevs) bowl as you used for your noodles, fill it with warm water.
6. Get your plastic chopping mat ready, this is what you’ll be rolling your rolls upon
7. Place one of your rice paper wrappers into the water, as flat as you can to keep the circular shape in tact
8. At first the rice paper wrappers feel plasticy and strong but after a few seconds it will begin to feel gummy and membrane-y (yum) and ready to be made into a summer roll
9. When it does, place it flat on your plastic chopping mat
10. Start filling your roll-to-be – do it in the same way as you’d fill a fajita or a regular wrap, by placing your ingredients about a fifth of the way down your rice paper, leaving space at the sides for rolling
11. Start by adding lettuce then your other ingredients on top
12. Then roll the rice paper over your ingredients once, tuck in the ends, and keep rolling until you’re left with something that resembles the above.
13. Eat. With too much delicious dipping sauce
14. Drink the dipping sauce when there are no summer rolls left.
The weekend is coming up (woo-hoo, Fri-YAY) and I think this is the best time to try this recipe as it gives you time to pop to your equivalent Hoo Hing. It looks like it might be tricky – but actually it’s really easy once you have all your ingredients in place. And this coming from me, goddamnit!
If I can do it, a newborn baby can do it.
However, if you’re after a meal that’s even more lo-fi, check out my sister’s cooking blog now: http://spoiltthebroth.blogspot.co.uk/.
Kitchen cocks-up: Surprisingly few. In fact, I’d go so far as to say, none. There were no “moments”. At no point did I feel like throwing a strop or having a frustrated cry or saying a word that begins with F.
Listened to: Delilah, 4am mixtape. Nice.