Vietnamese spring rolls & peanut sauce.

Spring rolls are one of the freshest tasting things you will ever eat. With fresh basil, mint and cilantro how could they not be? Add that strange rubbery rice paper wrap and a thick sweet peanut dipping sauce and we’ve been transported to heaven once again. Spring rolls are an awesome snack but will fill you up super quick so if you eat to many to fast you may end up having them as your meal. Although the standard ingredients are listed in the recipe below, you could peel carrots or zucchini into thin strips, whatever you have and think sounds good really. Spring rolls are very versatile. Most restaurants put pork in them but anything goes. The main ingredients are the bean thread noodles, lettuce and herbs. Though the bean sprouts give it that awesome needed crunch if you ask me. Try them at your local Vietnamese restaurant or make them yourself, they are a guaranteed hit. And the peanut sauce is amazing. If any is left over I end up eating it off my finger.

Vietnamese Spring Rolls & Peanut Sauce

Make as many as you want. There are many wraps in a package

round spring roll wraps (rice paper)
bean thread noodles
lettuce or herb salad mix
bean sprouts
tofu, cooked shrimp or both
equal parts fresh basil, fresh mint and fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
1/2 c. hoisin sauce (Lee Kum Kee brand is sweeter and tastes good by itself, some others not so much, beware)
1 T. sesame oil
1 T. soy sauce
about 1/4 c. water, you can do more or less depending on your desired consistency

Start warming up some water in a medium sized pot on the stove. When its warm (medium heat) add the bean thread noodles and let soak in the water for about 15 minutes or until soft like noodles. Rinse and chop herbs then set aside. Wash bean sprouts, lettuce and cooked shrimp setting aside. Cut tofu into strips and set aside with all that other stuff you “set aside”. Once this is done your noodles should be ready, strain and cool. Grab a spring roll wrap and dip into a pan of water (I used an 8 inch round cake pan that fit the 8 inch wraps perfectly) for just 2 seconds. Really, don’t try and wait till they get to a soft state or you will be screwed. Remove after two seconds of being submerged and set onto a plate. Fill with ingredients near one end, fold the two sides in and start rolling trying to keep a tight roll. By the time you roll it up the wrap will be the exact softness that it should be but maybe a tad wet. Set aside on a plate and continue rolling up the rest. They will dry to a perfect spring roll and will keep in the fridge through the next day if zip locked or plastic wrapped. Just follow instructions on back of spring roll wraps package.

Now for the key, the sauce. I use more hoisin because I love the stuff. If you want it more peanut like just start using half the amount of hoisin called for above. For the sauce just mix together peanut butter, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, and water.

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