Enjoy now: rice paper rolls
Rice paper rolls make a fresh, healthy starter or light main course, and a great advantage is they can be made a few hours ahead. Store them in the fridge covered with a damp tea towel. They should be eaten on the day they are made.
You’ll find rice paper wrappers at Asian food stores and in some supermarkets. They are sold in stacks of round or square sheets in various sizes.
The thin, transparent sheets are made from a rice and water paste and are embossed with a basketweave pattern from the mats they are dried on.
To prepare the wrappers, fill a shallow bowl with warm water and spread a damp tea towel on the bench. Working one at a time, submerge a wrapper in the water for about 30 seconds, until softened and pliable. Lift out and lay on a clean tea towel. Place your filling in the centre. Fold the bottom edge up over the filling, wrap the two sides in then roll up from the bottom like a cigar.
The secret to tidy rolls is not to soak the wrappers too long or fill them too much, or they will be limp and may burst open.
Nuoc cham, made with garlic, chilli and fish sauce, is the traditional Vietnamese dipping sauce, but you can use a favourite Asian-style sauce or simply sweet chilli sauce thinned with a little lime juice.
Chicken & Mint Rice Paper Rolls