I was first introduced to summer rolls at my old office where we had them every week for lunch. I instantly loved them and so immediately tried to recreate them at home. After a bit of experimenting, I landed on the recipe below and have not stopped making them since.
Feel free to mix up the fillings to suit your preferences – they can easily be made vegetarian by omitting the meat, or you can swap out the chicken for prawns if you prefer. Vary the vegetables to accommodate whatever’s lurking in your fridge, or add peanuts if you like a bit of crunch.
The recipe is a little time consuming and fiddly (but very therapeutic!) so I would set aside a couple of hours to make them.
2 free range chicken breasts
A drizzle of honey
A couple of tablespoons of soy sauce
1 large carrot
1/2 large cucumber
2 little gem lettuces, or enough to give 12 leaves
Handful of fresh basil
Handful of fresh coriander
Handful of breansprouts
About 100g bean thread vermicelli noodles (like this)
Spring roll wrappers (like this)
For the dipping sauce
1 small clove of garlic, minced
Rice wine vinegar
Makes approximately 12
Heat a splash of vegetable oil in a frying pan.
Chop the chicken breasts into small pieces (make sure you wash your hands after handling raw chicken!)
Add to the pan and fry over a medium-high heat until completely cooked through.
Towards the end of the cooking time, add a drizzle of honey and a few tablespoons of soy sauce.
Leave to cook for a few minutes so the chicken is nicely glazed and golden.
Set aside to cool.
Now prep the veg.
Slice the cucumber and carrot into thin strips.
Pick the leaves off the little gem (leave them whole).
Roughly chop the basil and coriander.
Blanch the beansprouts by plunging into a saucepan of boiling water. Leave to cook for a minute or two, then drain and run under cold water.
Place the noodles in a large bowl and pour over boiling water. Leave to sit for 10 minutes, then drain and run under cold water.
Assemble all the prepped ingredients.
Let’s get rolling!
Take your first roll wrapper and dip in water for a couple of seconds to soften (I do this by submerging it under a shallow layer of water on a dinner plate).
Transfer to a separate plate and dab off any excess water with kitchen roll. It will be quite sticky but just go with it!
Place a small handful of the noodles in the centre of the roll.
Then top with a few slices of cucumber, carrot, some beansprouts…
…a few bits of chicken…
…a couple of leaves of basil and coriander…
and a lettuce leaf.
Fold one side of the pancake over the middle.
Then fold over the two sides.
Fold over the remaining side and there you have your first roll!
Repeat with the remaining wrappers until you have made all of them.
I like to serve these with a simple sauce made by combining a minced garlic clove, soy sauce, chilli sauce and rice wine vinegar.
I just mix these ingredients in a bowl and taste and tweak until happy.
You can also add chilli slices or a bit of grated ginger.
And that’s it! So fresh and delicious – I would recommend eating on the day you make them.