Recipe: The Best Alternative Summer Rolls (a.k.a. Vietnamese Spring Rolls)


Makes: About 20 rolls

Prep time: About 2 hours

Warning: I am useless at sticking to precise measurements, so feel free to improvise based on my guidelines



10 ripe avocados
2-4 large garlic cloves (depending on how much you like garlic. I love it so I would use an entire bulb – unless planning to kiss someone later on.)
2 limes worth of fresh juice
4 finely chopped spring onions
A quarter of a red onion, finely chopped
A handful of fresh coriander leaves. Prepare extra for garnishing later on.
1 large tomato chopped up (with the middle taken out) or you can use pre-made salsa for extra flavor
Garlic seasoning salt

A bag of shredded cabbage and/or shredded broccoli stems and carrots (most other shredded veg will do also)

Dressing (for the cabbage):
Lemon/lime to taste
Olive oil to taste
2 tablespoons of sweet chili sauce
2 tablespoons of peanut sauce
Coconut and lemongrass mixed spice (I prefer Thai mixed spices but you can experiment with other spices too)
Cayenne pepper, ground black pepper and seasoning salt

20 round rice paper wraps

Mixed herb salad (I like the one from Trader Joe’s)

Peanut Dipping Sauce (which I like to mix together with sweet chili sauce so that it’s sweeter and not as dense)


1. Make the guacamole first. Mix together all the ingredients and mush it up with a fork. I prefer chunky guacamole which requires very minimal mushing!

2. In a separate bowl, mix the dressing into the cabbage and shredded vegetables.

3. There is an art to handling the rice paper wraps and I have no idea what that is, so I created my own technique….
Delicately place the hard (and brittle) rice paper on an aluminium foil-covered plate and place the plate over a larger, deeper plate. Pour boiling water over the rice paper, making sure that the entirety gets wet and then drain out the water into the larger plate. If the rice paper feels hard, dab it with more boiling water at any point. The trick to this is to make sure that the rice paper doesn’t stick to itself before rolling it because it’s very difficult to un-stick it without tearing.


4. Lay out a few of the mixed herb lettuce leaves on the middle of the now-soft, rice paper. This provides extra firmness when you roll the wrap. Add a tablespoon or two of the guacamole onto the middle of the lettuce bed and a couple of tablespoons of the dressed shredded vegetables on top of that. Garnish with a few coriander leaves.

5. Roll one side of the paper over the filling and then use the aluminium to tighten firmly. Fold over both the sides and then, again using the foil, roll the rest of the rice paper. The moist paper will stick to itself but it’s important not to overfill the middle with too much guacamole or veg and to make sure that it packed tightly and rolled firmly. Also make sure that no water gets into the roll. Feel free to add any seasoning, according to taste, and you can swap the Thai seasoning with any other flavored spices.

6. Put the peanut and sweet chili dipping sauce in a small bowl and serve with the serving dish/plate of wraps.


One Response

  1. hi hen. there is a much simpler way of making these too. prep time 20 mins. which might suit some busy people better…but i will try this when your here pls bring lemons. xa

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