Vietnam: 5/52

Gỏi cuốn

Whether or not you can pronounce the name, you’ve probably seen them before, prepackaged at the grocery store. Spring rolls! This traditional dish is filled with prawn, pork and vegetables and wrapped in Bánh tráng (don’t ask us how to pronounce…) otherwise known as rice paper.

The Dish

After 4 weeks gorging on rich, creamy dishes, we opted for something lighter from Vietnam. The Gỏi cuốn are light rolls stuffed with shrimp, fresh cilantro, chives, lettuce (thanks Gotham Greens!), carrots, vermicelli noodles, and… pork belly. Okay – so maybe not as healthy as we hoped.

The Verdict

There’s a lot of simple ingredients in this dish, but it took a surprising amount of time getting everything prepped!

1
The pre-wrap spread

 

We followed the recipe from Danag Cuisine and added carrots to add some more color and snap to the dish. We also did not use mint in our recipe because, well, because we didn’t have any.

The hardest part of the recipe was wrapping everything neatly in the Bánh tráng, which are super thin, self-adhesive, and tear easily. The four pictured in this post are our 4 best ones, and there were probably 10 more that didn’t make the cut. After this, we definitely have a new found appreciation for beautiful, uniform spring rolls.

S and E both felt that these were as good as grocery store takeout varieties. The peanut dipping sauce is crucial, as it adds sweetness and moisture to the dish. The combination of textures in this dish great – the snap of the shrimp, the crunch of the veggies, the noodley-ness of the noodles, make every bite different and fun.

4
Harder than it looks to get these to look consistent!

Overall, we’re very happy with how these turned out! We’re hopeful that next time we make these, the prep work and wrapping will be easier.

 

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