With fresh mint and basil, you can see why these are called “spring” rolls. Unlike their fried eggroll cousin, these are light and delicate.
Yield: 8 servings
- 4 oz. rice noodles
- 16 round rice papers (usually available in the grocery store)
- 32 large fresh basil leaves (or more smaller ones)
- 16 lettuce leaves (remove the center “spine”)
- 1 1/2 C. grated carrot (3 handfuls)
- 3/4 C. finely chopped peanuts
- 32 medium cooked shrimp, cleaned and deveined
- 32 large mint leaves (or more smaller ones)
1. Fill a 2-quart saucepan with water. Add 2-3 cloves of garlic, stems from your mint and basil leaves, and 1 T. salt. Bring to a boil. Add the rice noodles and boil one minute. Drain and set aside.
2. Fill a large pan or bowl with very warm water. The hot water should be placed at the beginning of an “assembly-line” of the remaining ingredients, each in their own bowl.
3. Dip the round rice paper in the hot water for about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Carefully remove from water, and pat dry on a kitchen towel, gently smoothing it out flat. If it’s not dry, it won’t stay closed at the end. You may need to reheat your water occasionally in the process.
4. For each spring roll, place basil leaves in a row down the center, leaving about 1 inch (2.5 cm.) on each end. On the ba- sil, place a small amount of cooked rice noodles, then a piece of lettuce, some grated carrot, a sprinkling of peanuts, 2 medium shrimp and lastly, several mint leaves.
5. Fold the two ends into the center and then roll up as tightly as possible without tearing the rice papers. Lay the rolls, seam side down on a serving platter.
6. To serve, cut each spring roll in half. Each person can spoon as much peanut sauce as they like over the cut edge. If you don’t want to pass the dish of peanut sauce, make a double or triple recipe and serve in individual bowls.
At least one hour before serving, combine in a glass jar or bowl: 1 clove garlic, finely minced, 1/2 C. water, 1 T. rice vinegar, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1 T. sugar. Just before serving, toss in 1/4 C. roasted peanuts, finely chopped.
If you enjoyed this recipe you might want to purchase the PDF version of Debbie’s cookbook Around Our Table, a great way to keep your recipes handy no matter where you are in the world. For more information, go to http://ciaofromdebbie.com/cookbooks/
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