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Summer Rolls

I made Vietnamese style summer rolls with rice paper for the first time last weekend. My husband does not care for herbs such as cilantro and Thai basil so he didn't care for the rolls. I still have at least half a package left. I have googled for variations and even found the ingredients for a cobb salad use to stuff the rolls and then a dipping sauce of green goddess dressing.

I'd love to hear what different combinations of fillings and dipping sauces you have tried that aren't necessarily authentic Asian recipes.

Did I mention I have company coming this weekend and would like a unique appetizer? TIA

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  1. Why not make some Korean BBQ rolls with boolgohgi, red lettuce, a little bit of green onion, and thin strips of cucumber and a salty/sweet/spicy soy dipping sauce on the side?

    I suggest that because I've yet to come across a dude who doesn't love Korean BBQ, and there are none of those pesky herbs your hubs doesn't care for. :)

    5 Replies
    1. re: inaplasticcup

      I second this idea! Or to go even further, just go all out korean with it. use kimchi instead of green onions and use kimchi'd (fermented) cucumber instead of regular cucumbers. Wrap the roll in lettuce instead of stuffing lettuce in the roll itself would be amazing.

      1. re: inaplasticcup

        this sounds great and I have printed a recipe for Korean bbq. What kind of salty/weet/spicy soy dipping sauce do you suggest? Recipe?

        BTW I have qochujang on hand and further googling led me to some other interesting recipes. Thanks.

        1. re: dfrostnh

          Oh, cool! I'd recommend either reserving a little bit of the marinade and adding some fresh chopped green onions, a touch of vinegar and maybe a few chili flakes, or making maht (seasoned) gochoojahng.

          - 1/2 cup gochoojahng
          - 1+1/2 Tablespoons sugar
          - 1+1/2 Tablespoons water
          - 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
          - 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil
          - 1 Tablespoon soy sauce

          Just stir all those ingredients together until all the sugar is dissolved. It would look really pretty with some toasted sesame seeds or chopped green onion on top.

          Great idea re: the gochoojahng, darren. :)

      2. Why don't you just make summer rolls for yourself?

        3 Replies
        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

          Because she probably doesn't want to have to make two separate meals...

            1. re: rabaja

              ? No, I am not in a bad mood. Does the above comment really come across as being upset? I am just saying that if the OP enjoy summer rolls, then why can't she just keep making more for herself. Sure her husband won't eat it, but she can. More summer rolls for herself.

          1. I put curried chicken salad and bibby lettuce in them and they were delicious.

            1. You could actually do pretty much any green salad and use a complementary dressing as a dipping sauce--just try it out with the rice paper before serving to guests.

              ETA: They can be used for desserts, too. Banana and chocolate is particularly great--preferably fried. Using two layers of rice paper generally prevents any leakage.

              1 Reply
              1. re: guilty

                I've done that - I put dried sour cherries, bits of pistachio, gorgonzola and greens inside the rolls and served them with balsamic vinegar and oil and it was delicious and looked pretty funky...

              2. You can fry 'em. And you can put pretty much anything inside before you do. Like steak and cheese, or thin-sliced squash, or pretty much anything else.

                1. Stuff them with fajita stuff; grilled steak, guac, cheese. Put salsa on side.

                  1. I use prawns or chicken, either shredded or minced up. To this you can add all kinds of things (or even keep it vege: bean sprouts, julienned carrot, rocket, mint, chillis, chopped cherry tomatoes.

                    1. Thanks everyone. I know I can make the rolls just for myself but I really like to make meals we both can enjoy. We have a lovely screened porch where we can eat. We have a decent vegetable garden. DH makes the alcoholic drinks. I make the food. Good team work.

                      1. I'd try something like chicken salad with some romaine and cucumber for crunch as a western option.

                        Story from last time I made summer rolls - drinks party last weekend, had chopped more mint and coriander than I used, so the leftovers were sitting in a bowl. Friend goes into the kitchen, sees what he thinks is just chopped mint, decides to make mojitos. Oops!

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: ultimatepotato

                          Oh No, awful waste of nice mojitos.

                          Chicken is a good idea. I'm going to experiment with cukes, chives, maybe steamed broccoli. I plan to make some new salad dressings this weekend and will try some salad dunks.

                            1. re: southernitalian

                              I was thinking the same thing. All the ingredients for a mojito do go well with cilantro. I think I will try it :)

                          1. i actually like rice more than noodles so i do things like steak or some type of meat, rice, and some veg (usually baby spinach). i do keep the green onion or chive sticking out garnish just cause i like something onion-y with my savory meals. i guess you could say i use rice paper more as a container. so any meal combo that works, i just wrap it up.
                            i don't really have dipping sauce outside of a restaurant setting. if the meat is flavorful enough, i'm ok without it.

                            this won't help, at least not right now, but at thanksgiving i use the leftovers. stuffing, turkey, cranberry jelly (and green onions)...

                            stuffing tastes good with fish sauce fyi

                            1. As long as the ingredients are fresh, you can add whatever you like. That's the way summer rolls are made in Vietnamese cuisine.