These are a revelation. They are so light and tasty--healthy, even. Until you dip them in the savory peanut sauce that is. These rolls are fun and easy to make, yet people will be very impressed with you. You can essentially add anything you like, then just roll it up--sort of like a cross between a burrito and sushi! This recipe is based on one from the fantastic book Quick & Easy Thai by Nancie McDermott. If you don't own it, go get it! All of her recipes are very approachable and delicious.
- 8 ounces very thin dried rice noodles
- 12 round rice paper sheets, about 8 inches in diameter
- 2 cups tender lettuce (I used prepackaged butter lettuce)
- 1/2 cup fresh Thai basil or mint
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 5 green onions, cut in 3-inch strips
- Thin cucumber spears (optional)
- Thin carrot spears (optional)
- 18 medium cooked shrimp, halved lengthwise
- Cooked chicken (optional)
- Boil water in a medium saucepan. Drop in rice noodles and remove from heat. Gently toss and stir the noodles so they cook evenly. Let stand 8 to 10 minutes, then drain and rinse with cold water. Drain well and set aside. Makes about 2 cups of noodles.
- Arrange prepped ingredients around a cutting board. Have the serving plate ready. Fill a skillet with very warm water.
- Submerse one rice paper sheet into the warm water for about 15 seconds, until it is soft and pliable. Carefully remove the rice paper, letting it drain, and spread it flat on the cutting board.
- About a third of the way in, make a horizontal row of each ingredient, except shrimp. Lift the wrapper edge nearest you and roll it up and away from you, tucking the edge in over the pile in the middle. Tightly fold in the sides of the wrapper, to form a little package. Place 3 shrimp halves over the filling, then continue rolling the wrapper tightly.
- Press the seam to close the roll, applying a little water if it has dried out. Set the roll on the platter seam side down. Continue until you run out of fillings. Serve with peanut sauce or other dipping sauce.
Makes 10-12 rolls
- 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste or mussamun curry paste
- 2 teaspoons roasted chili paste
- 1/2 cup chicken broth or water
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon palm sugar or brown sugar
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- Bring coconut milk to a gentle boil in a medium saucepan. Add the curry paste and roasted chili paste. Cook 4 to 5 minutes, stirring to dissolve.
- Add the chicken broth, fish sauce, sugar, peanut butter and lime juice. Cook for 1 minute, stirring to smooth.
- Remove from heat, transfer to a serving bowl and set aside to cool.