Tuesday, August 25, 2015

How to Make Fresh Spring Rolls – Authentic is as Authentic Does

Based on the YouTube comments appearing under the newly posted spring rolls video, lots of people missed the part about this not trying to be a specific recipe, but simply a demo featuring the magic that is damp, rice paper wrappers.

Don’t get me wrong; I love the “authentic” spring rolls I so often order at my friendly, neighborhood Vietnamese restaurant. Loaded with sweet shrimp, and bursting with vermicelli noodles, they are among the most delicious things ever invented.

However, I do reserve the right to soak rice paper wrappers in water, and… (I hope you’re sitting down for this) ...not make those! What you see here is just what I had on hand that day, and the next time I do a batch of these, who the heck knows what they’ll encase. If I have a point, that’s it.

Speaking of soaking in water, many commenters suggested that I dunk these in warm water for just a few seconds to hydrate, instead of the longer dip in cold water. I’ve tried both methods, and had more issues with the warmer/faster approach. They seemed to get too rubbery, too fast, which I found made the rolling harder.

Anyway, to each his own, and that goes for water temperature, filling ingredients, and dipping sauce. By the way, there are no ingredient amounts below, since that’s up to you entirely. You should be able to get “rice paper wrappers” at any large grocery store with an Asian food section, but if not, they’re easily found online. I hope you give these, or something similar, a try soon. Enjoy!

Click here to see our peanut sauce recipe video!


Yue LI said...

Hi Chef John, thank you for this method for authenticity! I am gonna try it with my grilled beef form this past weekend.

By the way, I wonder if you could post your way of making beef Wellington?

Food Junkie said...

Oh these things are awesome and so tasty. Marinated, grilled pork strips are a favourite of mine with nice crunchy veggies like carrots and bean sprouts. Peanut sauce is good but I prefer Nuoc Cham.

Bryan Soto said...

Sally Bowles. Have you considered a part time gig as a stand up comedian? I see a lot of possibilities for you as a world renown funnyman Chef John. I'm not even close to kidding.

Anto Nello said...

Can I double the rice paper and fry them?

Gretchen inNOLA said...

Oh WOW! You have no idea how helpful this is! I've been doing the warm water, dealing with sticky/teary rice paper wrappings for so long. LOVE the double-fill part - genius! Thanks Dude

Rachel ZHANG said...

do you know how to make the pickled carrots they serve with open face sandwich at Tartine bakery? any thoughts Chef?

Clara said...

I always thought that these were called salad rolls, and that the deep fried ones were called spring rolls?

But either way, yummy!

Marc said...

Chef John,

Thank you for bringing such a tremendous amount of joy to so many people's lives.

Wishing you all the very best of continued success and happiness!!

Kathleen said...

I am going to try a Banh Mi inspired version of this. I have all the ingredients for the sandwich except the bread, but I do have rice paper!