This is a combo recipe we’ve made before for ourselves, since we love getting summer rolls at our favorite Asian restaurant in town, Tasty Eats. We have made a couple variations of these rolls over time, so I will share what we came up with for this particular round. Last night, one of our friends was having a few of us over for dinner to celebrate his new apartment. He was making a Teriyaki chicken dish and Julia of course was going to cover dessert, so we had to try and figure out what to make. Will had originally suggested bread, but I said that was silly since you don’t usually get bread with your dinner at an Asian restaurant. So I suggested we make these instead. They’re fairly simple ingredients-wise, but can give you some difficulty in the rolling of the wraps. Will cut everything up per usual and I have always been in charge of dealing with the wrapping process. But as always, no matter the combination of veggies and meat inside the wraps, they always turn out well. We also had some left over that we ate for lunch today and even though they had gotten a little stiff overnight, their flavor was almost better than it was last night!
Summer Rolls (based on recipes from Williams-Sonoma and Budget Bytes; serves 6)
1/2 English cucumber
1 medium red bell pepper
1 large carrot
2 oz. bean threads
Fresh basil leaves
Fresh mint leaves
12 rice paper wraps
Baby shrimp (we didn’t use them this time but have before and they’re delicious)
Peanut Sauce (adapted from Budget Bytes)
1/4 cup peanut butter (we use a crunchier type, but Beth recommends smooth)
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 tsp sriracha sauce
a powdering of ginger (or 1/2 inch of freshly grated ginger)
1/4 cup + 1/2 tbsp hot water
Prepare the sauce by combining hoisin sauce, peanut butter, sriracha and ginger. Add 1/4 cup of hot water and whisk ingredients together. Continue to add hot water until sauce is the consistency you desire.
Gather and prepare filling ingredients. Slice cucumber, pepper, carrot, avocado, and bean threads. Place on cutting board with basil and mint leaves.
Get a pan or bowl that rice paper wrapper fits into easily. Fill with warm water and stick rice paper wrap in for about 5 seconds or until soft like a paper towel. Place flat on a clean surface and put a few slices of each filling ingredient in it. Fold in the left and right sides and begin to roll like a burrito, making sure ends and sides are all tucked in. Place aside to firm. Once all wraps are made, dip in sauce and enjoy!
*If you have trouble getting the rolls to wrap easily or the rice paper wraps rip, just double up on the rice paper wraps per roll. The first time we made these I used two wraps per roll and this time I only used one. Either works fine and I’ve seen it served both ways at restaurants.