Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

Bento-ing from: Westwood › Massachusetts › USA
Joined: 25 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 9 years 4 weeks ago.

My kids and husband really like these in their bentos and they are great way to use up small quantities of cooked food. These are spring rolls made with fresh ingredients and not the fried variety. Here is how I do them:

Spring Rolls wrappers - can be found at Asian markets. I like the medium size which is about 8 inches in diameter.

Glass noodles (also called cellophane or bean thread noodles; look for the thinnest ones)

Filling: can anything really, there is usually a meat and a leafy green. Here are some combinations we like:

Smoked Chicken
Fresh basil leaves
Julienned carrots

Cooked shrimp
Fresh mint or basil leaves
Julienned radish

Cooked pork
Soft lettuce such as Boston lettuce
Julienned apple

….and of course they can have vegetarian fillings as well. Curtthe fillings into short pieces and have ready in bowls to assemble. The cellophane noodles just need to be placed in a bowl and covered with boiling water for about 3 minutes and then drained.

To assemble:

The wrappers are hard and plastic like. Take one and place it in a bowl or dish filled with warm water. The dish should be big enough to let the wrapper lie flat under the water. Let it soften until it feels pliable but not totally soft (less than 15 seconds.) Lift it out, let the excess water drip off for a second or two and place it on a cutting board. Add a green, your fillings and a small hank of noodles right below the center of the wrapper. Roll the wrapper totally around the filling and tuck it under, then bring in the two sides and continue to roll up snugly.

Place the roll seam side down in your bento box and lien them up neatly, add a dipping sauce and enjoy! The wrappers taste best when made fresh; they get a mushy if made the night before, however the fillings can be prepared in advance.

Here is a link with lots of pix:



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Bento-ing from: Cupertino › California › USA
Joined: 8 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 5 years 30 weeks ago.
Re: Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

Oh! thanks for the recipe!! I've had these at restaurants and catered events, but never thought to make them at home. I love deep fried egg rolls, but they are higher in fat and a big production to make at home, these look great and much easier! Thanks again!



Bento-ing from: London › UK
Joined: 4 Mar 2009
User offline. Last seen 5 years 17 weeks ago.
Re: Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

I adore these too (I recommended them to another forum member here: )

I don't use pork to make them but I'd never considered using apple... have to try that!

I'd love to know which sauce you use or would recommend for dipping these in.

In that post I linked to I outlined the peanut butter/hoisin sauce combination I like best:
4 large spoons of hoisin sauce and 2 spoons of hot water to thin it down
2 large spoons of (for me - crunchy) peanut butter
1 spoon of chilli sauce (I use a vegetarian sambal)
a dash of vinegar
1 finely chopped large garlic clove (raw or fried)
Stir together and taste - add sugar or honey if preferred

Maki has just featured a France based bento maker in the justbento website. I couldn't help but notice that these same Spring Rolls are featured in the Charlie Chaplin bento she posts a photo of:

Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 3 weeks 2 days ago.
Re: Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

There is a large Vietnamese population in France - actually Vietnamese-origin people seem to run most 'Asian' restaurants, especially outside of these 'raw' unfried rolls are very popular here. I think the skin part is usually made of a type of rice paper wrapping that is just soaked in water until soft, rather than wheat based spring roll wrappers. This makes them a good choice for people with gluten intolerencies (as long as you're careful with the fillings and sauces).


The Big Onigiri.

- Wherever you go, there you are. -

Bento-ing from: Avignon or Lyon, depends › France
Joined: 10 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 9 years 15 weeks ago.
Re: Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

Yes indeed - those spring rolls (in fact, what we call sping rolls in france, or rather "rouleaux de printemps" most often refers to this kind of uncooked rolls) are very popular here. After all, vietnam was a french colony...
Your recipe seems delicious Phyllis, I never tried a cooked pork and apple combination !
Maki's right, the wrapping is just a rice wrapper softened in water, and usually the noodles used are thin rice noodles rather than glass (beanthread) noodles. But anyway I don't think this type of roll is very authentic - I imagine the vietnamese population had to adapt the recipe to what was available in france ! ^-^

The sauce usually served along with them in restaurants is very easy to make, and gluten-free too:

- 1 dose nuoc mam (vegetarians can use nuoc tuong instead)
- 1 dose sugar
- 1/2 dose lime juice with pulp
- 4 doses water
- 1 dose vinegar
- 1 small clove garlic, minced
- a hint of minced/pureed red peper, to taste
- shredded carrot, add at the end.

Dilute the sugar in the warmed water, let it cool down, mix the other ingredients and add the shredded carrot just before serving.

By the way Maki, what you said about chinese restaurants is very true... and it's a shame, too, I think. I'm sorry to say that most of those generic chinese-vietnamese joints aren't very good ; however the only good asians restaurants I know in south france (ouside of big cities) are old, tradditional vietnemese ones. Sadly they tend to disappear as fast-food type asian restaurant chains grow more and more popular. ^^;

Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 3 weeks 2 days ago.
Re: Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls (not fried)

I've never been to Vietnam, but I have heard from other people that you can get pretty good and authentic Vietnamese food in France, esp. Paris, compared to other cities elsewhere. I'm pretty sure rice wrappers are the 'authentic' kind. I guess one concern I might have with this type of roll in a bento is keeping it cool enough - I might pack an ice pack with it.

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