Skip to content

Bento 62: Vietnamese summer rolls

August 17, 2010

One of my favourite Vietnamese meals is the gỏi cuốn, also known as summer rolls or crystal rolls. A thin layer of slightly salty rice paper envelopes fresh vegetables, cold rice sticks and prawns, this is then dipped in a sweet-savoury peanut dip. The contrast of the light roll with the deeply flavourful peanut dip is wonderful, and I love the mushy/crunchy texture of the summer roll. As the name implies, it’s eaten during the summer months, but I love all rolls all the time, and would be happy to have them all year long.

Even though the weather is rubbish again (50 F in the summer?!), I’m in denial and am keeping with the summer theme. Heck, it’s SUMMER, and as cold as it is, it is probably as good as it gets! Same with me wearing sandals ;). I’ve been on the hunt for summer recipes that are best eaten slightly chilled or room temperature, and the gỏi cuốn is the perfect way to go. I must be admit that it’s slightly sticky to eat neatly, this is why I’ve separated them with lettuce leaves so I can pick them up individually.




Packed in my largest box, which is the lovely pink Lego box, there was only really enough space to pop in a couple of salad leaves and a big pot of dipping sauce. Slightly messy with the dipping sauce, I love the concept of finger food, and this is pretty much my ideal food.


My recipe for gỏi cuốn / Vietnamese Summer Rolls


  • rice paper, submerged individually in hot water just before rolling
  • halved boiled tiger prawns, 3 halves for each roll
  • boiled rice sticks, cooled
  • chives, coriander, thai basil, beansprouts, salad leaves ect
  • sliced grilled tofu (optional)
  • sauce (all mixed together)

  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter, warmed in the microwave
  • 1/4 water
  • 1 tbs chopped peanuts
  • Fully dip rice paper into a pan of hot water, and lay flat on a big dinner plate
    Place prawn halves, then rice sticks in the middle. Add on other vegetables as desired
    Fold like a burrito; sides up, and then bottom to top.
    Enjoy dipped into peanut sauce

    And that’s it! Simple, yummy and fresh 🙂

    12 Comments leave one →
    1. August 17, 2010 9:33 pm


      • August 18, 2010 7:54 am

        Perfect for summer weather – IF we actually had a summer here!

    2. August 17, 2010 10:50 pm

      I love these rolls too! Thanks for the recipe.

      • August 18, 2010 7:53 am

        Hi Xelia – I love them as well…a little too much! Do give them a try!

    3. August 18, 2010 9:12 am

      Love the fresh Vietnamese rolls! Great in bento 🙂

    4. Hypothermya permalink
      August 18, 2010 9:15 pm

      Yum! Can I eat with you today? 😀

    5. August 21, 2010 9:05 pm

      I bought some of this rice paper yesterday at the asian market so I will be trying these for lunch next week. I think I shall have to steal some of your ideas as I have never made them before 🙂

      • August 21, 2010 10:28 pm

        Good luck!

        Rice paper can be slightly tricky to handle; you need to get the water-soaking JUST RIGHT….I threw many sheets away:). I find a large skillet filled with near boiling water is best to fully soak them – a dinner plate is not quite large enough 🙂

        If you’re wrapping them up for bento, be sure to wrap them individually in lettuce leaves first before to prevent them sticking together. Wet lettuce leaves is fine – it keeps the rolls moist!

        • August 26, 2010 5:03 pm

          Great! Thank you for the hints.
          I did start to make these, had filling prepared and then my oven went on fire while I was making the tea. Cue fire extinguisher and lots of powder. The whole kitchen was covered in the stuff including my filling for the rolls 😦
          Will try again next week!

        • August 27, 2010 10:57 am

          Oh no, you poor thing! Better luck next week – just let me know if you have any questions!

    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

    You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


    Connecting to %s

    %d bloggers like this: