Fresh Southern Rolls (Gỏi cuốn)
Ingredients (makes 16 rolls)
- 24 small prawns, boiled medium cooked, deshelled, and deveined, cut in half lengthwise
- 400g pork loin, boiled, thinly slice into strips
- 1 package Vietnamese rice noodles, cooked in boiling water for 3- 5 minutes, drained, flushed with plenty of cold water.
- 1 butterhead lettuce, leaves separated
- 1 English cucumber, seeded, cut in julienne
- 16 sprigs coriander
- 16 sprigs mint
- ½ small bunch of Chinese chives, cut into lengths
- 16 rice paper rounds, 20 cm diameter
- 350ml hoisin-garlic sauce
- Dip a rice paper in warm water and then place it on your work surface. When the rice paper is soft, fold a lettuce leaf in half along its central spine and then tear off the spine. Place the folded leaf on the lower third of the rice paper round. Put around 10g noodles on top of the lettuce, spreading them in a rectangle. Lay a couple of pork strips on top, and then cucumber, top with herbs, spreading them out to distribute their flavors evenly.
- Bring up the lower edge of the rice paper to just cover the herbs. Then roll the rice paper a half turn so that the lettuce is top and visible through the rice paper. Add 3 shrimp halves, cut side up, to the unrolled portion of rice paper, lining them up snugly along with the partially finished roll. Fold the sides of the round inward to cover the filling. Roll one more full turn, so that the orange sides of the prawn are now facing up and visible through the rice paper. Tuck 2 Chinese chives into the roll, letting them extend out one end. Continue to roll until you have a snug cylindrical package. The rice paper is self-sealing. Use scissors to trim the chives, leaving 3 cm extending from the end.
- Repeat this process to make 16 rolls in all.
- Serve the roll with the Hoisin-garlic sauce
Ingredients (make about 350ml)
- 2-3 pcs chicken livers, cleaned
- 2 tbsp plus 235ml water
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 large clove garlic, finely minced
- 1 tsp tomato paste
- 6-8 tbsp Vietnamese hoisin sauce
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- ¼ tsp white pepper powder
- 1 ½ tsp cornstarch dissolved in 1 ½ tsp water
- 2-3 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted
- In an electric chopper, combine the livers and 2 tbsp water and process until smooth. Transfer the minced livers to a small bowl.
- In the saucepan, combine the oil, garlic over medium-low heat. When the oil is sizzling and pale yellow, add the tomato paste. When the oil is a bright yellow-orange, immediately pour in the 235ml water. Increase the heat and whisk in the liver mixture.
- When the sauce begins to boil, whisk in 6 tbsp hoisin sauce. Let the sauce cook for 1 minute and taste, adding more hoisin sauce, if necessary. Seasoning with fish sauce, brown sugar, and white pepper. Adjust to your taste. Bring the sauce to simmer, whisk in the cornstarch mixture, and cook further for about 30 seconds, or until thickened. Remove from the heat and let cool.
- Return to room temperature or warm slightly before serving.