makes 16 spring rolls

For the Dipping Sauce

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup Red Boat fish sauce, or more to taste
Juice of 2 limes or to taste
1 fresh red chile, minced (use a hot one!)
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted and ground
3 tablespoons scallions, minced


For the Spring Rolls

1 head romaine lettuce, julienned
1/2 bunch mint
1/2 bunch cilantro
8 ounces fresh bean sprouts
4 tablespoons peanuts, toasted and ground
1 cucumber, seeded and julienned
2 carrots, peeled and julienned
2 cups rice stick noodles, cooked and cooled
1 pound cooked shrimp, cut in half lengthwise
Fresh chives, cut an inch longer than the width of your final rolls
8-inch Banh Trang rice paper sheets


1. Make the dipping sauce. Bring the sugar and water to a boil in a small pan, cool. Stir in the fish sauce, lime juice, chiles, ground sesame seeds and scallions. Reserve.

2.  prepare all of your spring roll stuffings. Julienne the lettuce. Pull leaves from mint and cilantro. Wash and dry the bean sprouts. Toast and grind the peanuts. Julienne the cucumber and carrots. Cook the rice stick noodle according to the directions on the package. Cut the shrimp in half lengthwise. And finally, place all of the fillings on a tray, so it’s easy to grab them while you make your spring rolls.

3. Dip rice paper sheets one at a time in a pan of hot water (a pie tin works well), until soft. This will take 6-10 seconds.

4. Place refreshed rice paper on a work surface covered with a damp towel in front of you. Place a small portion of lettuce on the bottom third of the sheet, along with a few herb leaves, a pinch of ground peanuts, a scattering of sprouts, a couple pieces of julienned carrot and cucumber, and 2 tablespoons of the cooked rice noodle.

As seen on