Thursday, August 1, 2019

How to Make Easy Vietnamese Spring Rolls

We live in Houston, Texas and it gets really hot and humid here in the summer! When you walk outside, you feel like your clothes are sticking to you, especially in July and August, and you start to sweat almost immediately. Every morning when you wake up, your windows have condensation on them because it's so humid outside. Your A/C is constantly running to maintain a comfortable temperature inside - at least ours is and we have a SMART meter!

I don't know about you, but when it's hot in the summer, I don't feel like heating up the kitchen with a hot oven, or even eating a lot of warm food for that matter! I know some people insist on eating warm meals. Some people are like that and that's okay. I totally get that. I don't have to eat a hot meal for dinner. I can eat a salad. Cold food does not bother me.

If you are like me and don't mind having simple, cooler lunches or dinners, then you will like this delicious, easy spring roll fix!

My blog is not a food blog and I'm not a recipe guru! I don't have the calories available for this recipe, but everything is mostly healthy, I promise!

You start out by chopping whatever veggies you want to put in your spring rolls. You will also boil your vermicelli noodles, and cook your protein while you are prepping your veggies.

I put the following items in our spring rolls:
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Red Cabbage
  • Lettuce
  • Basil
  • Cilantro
  • Green Onion/Scallions
  • Avocado
  • Jalapeno
  • Chicken
  • Frozen Shrimp
  • Vermicelli Noodles

You will also need Vietnamese Rice Paper to wrap your veggies and protein in. Amazon has a good selection and you can purchase them on Prime if you have a Prime account. I used the Dynasty Rice Paper below:

If you are a vegetarian, you can substitute chicken and shrimp with tofu or another meat substitute. There are plenty of meat substitute items on the market.

The most time-consuming part of putting these spring rolls together is the process of chopping your veggies and filling the spring rolls. I chopped everything I was going to add into my spring rolls, and placed all items neatly onto a large cutting board in organized sections as shown above.  I placed the noodles, chicken, and shrimp in their own designated bowls. The noodles, chicken, and shrimp were all cooking while I was cutting my veggies.

I want to warn you that Rice Paper is not easy to work with, especially if you have never worked with it before. The directions tell you to put cold water on a plate, but I actually ended up putting cold water into a larger bowl (a large stainless steel bowl). You CANNOT keep the rice paper in the water for more than a few seconds or it will break, FYI! Trust me! This happened to me more than once. The rice paper may feel like it needs more moisture, but if you place one side of the rice paper in the water and flip it, and flip it again, you should be set. Now, you are ready to add your noodles, veggies, and protein.

This was the first time I made spring rolls and I filled my ingredients in steps. I have made spring rolls a few times since this time, and I ended up mixing all of my ingredients together before filling. The spring rolls actually turned out just as good, so I don't think it matters how the ingredients are filled. I will give a heads up and tell you to be mindful to not overfill your rice paper with too many noodles, veggies, or protein - or you may have issues folding the rice paper and/or the paper will tear.

First, add your noodles and chicken:

Next, add your carrots:

Next, add your cucumbers:

Next, add your red cabbage:

Next, add your basil and cilantro:

Next, add your lettuce:

Lastly, add your shrimp and avocados:

In the end, you will have a nice, refreshing summertime meal. Spring rolls are not heavy, you can put a variety of ingredients inside, depending on what you like to eat (I made them a few days ago and put apples inside). It's up to you. Be creative and enjoy!

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