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100g of dried vermicelli noodles, soaked/cooked according to packet, drained and chopped
1 red pepper, deseeded and chopped finely into matchsticks
1 cucumber, julienned
1 medium carrot, chopped finely into matchsticks
Skin on prawns (headless is fine)
Thai basil, sawtooth coriander, fresh mint
1 pack rice paper wraps
Begin by finely chopping and slicing all vegetables, keeping each element separate so you can use to create a decorative roll with the variety of colours. Prepare your desired protein if using. Pick any mint or herbs you are using. Soak, drain and chop your vermicelli.
Once your fillings are all prepared and ready, dip one rice paper wrap into a tub of cold water for 3 seconds, submerging all sides. Then remove and lay the rice paper wrap down onto a clean worktop in front of you.
Layer your vegetables horizontally in the bottom third of your rice paper wrap. If you are using chicken or pork it’s best to add some into the layer of fillings here. If you are using cooked prawns, hold off as you can place these strategically for a more aesthetically pleasing roll. After you’ve added your layers of veg, follow with a small handful of noodles.
Once the pastry starts to soften, you can start the folding process Very carefully so as not to tear the rice paper, fold the bottom centre of the wrapper up and over your filling, into the middle and gently stick it down by pulling it slightly towards you and rolling the entire roll slightly, completely enclosing the filling. This might be made easier by holding your fingertips over the roll, using your thumbs to roll rice paper tightly to enclose the filling.
If you are using prawns, add them in a single horizontal layer now, so they will peek through the wrapper once finished. Then, fold in both sides of the rice paper wrapper tightly and stick. Continue rolling until rice papers are fully closed and your summer roll has been made.
Repeat the process until your filling has been used up.
Nuoc Cham Dipping Sauce
2 cloves garlic, crushed
juice of 1–2 limes (depending on taste)
1 birds eye chilli, sliced
This dipping sauce should be made to taste bearing in mind the following ratio:
1 part fish sauce : 1 part palm sugar : 2 parts water
Blend together the sugar and water until sugar is fully dissolved. Add the fish sauce and lime juice, taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Followed by garlic and sliced birds eye chillies to your taste. Remember you want a balance of salty, sour, sweet and spicy.