Vietnam Spring Rolls

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Spring roll is one of the most popular dishes of Vietnamese cuisine that can be found at any destination throughout the country. In Vietnamese, it is called “Nem Ran” by people in the north and “Cha Gio” by southerners. This mouth-watering dish is complicated with plenty of ingredients and takes much time to prepare and cook, but it is not difficult to make at home.

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Spring roll is not an everyday dish but it is more preferred on special occasions such as family gatherings, family festivities or Tet holidays. It can be served as a main dish with dipping sauce, pickles and some herbs like lettuce, basil, coriander; or a side dish in some restaurants of Bun Cha (Grilled pork with Rice Vermicelli). 

1. Ingredients of Vietnamese Spring Rolls

The recipes of spring roll can vary significantly in different regions of Vietnam. Southern people would like the dish to be sweeter while inhabitants from the central region enjoy it spicier. There is no certain requirement for ingredients, the cooks can choose their preferences and tastes but usually, it comprises the following components:

• Meat: ground pork, crab meat (can be replaced by fresh shrimp or mantis shrimp)
• Egg: chicken eggs or duck eggs
• Vegetables: about 2-3 types among carrots, taro, sweet potatoes, tofu, jicama, bean sprouts, kohlrabi
• Glass noodles and rice paper
• Other spices: onions, scallions, salt, garlic, wood ear, abalone mushroom or shiitake mushroom.

Ingredients of Vietnamese Spring Rolls

In Hanoi and some other regions, ground pork can be added with crab meat to make Crab spring rolls or Nem Cua Be in Vietnamese, a fantastic side dish when enjoying Bun cha. Vietnamese people also create seafood spring roll by replacing crab meat with fresh shrimp or mantis shrimp.

Nem Cua Be


2. How to make Vietnamese Spring Rolls

In general, there are four steps to make Vietnam spring rolls: mixing ingredients, rolling up, deep frying and displaying the rolls.

About preparing the filling, grind or chop the meat finely. Cut vegetables into small pieces that fit the rolls. Soak glass noodles, wood ear, and mushrooms deep in water before rinsing and shredding. Chop onions, scallions, and garlic. All mixed with eggs and spices (add very little salt because the rice paper is available with salty flavour).

Prepare the filling of Spring Rolls

Before rolling this mixture, make the rice papers moist a little, cut the solid edges. Put a sufficient amount of the mixed filling near the bottom of rice paper, spread it out in a line. And leave enough room on each side of the wrap. Fold the bottom up over the filling, then fold the two sides over and roll up until the end of the sheet.

                       

The spring rolls need to be fried deeply in boiling oil until the rice papers turn golden brown. The dish is at its best with the alluring smell, eye-catching brown colour, not burnt or cracky. Display all the cooked rolls on the dish with fresh lettuce and herbs.

About Dipping Sauce: In Vietnam, a bowl of fish sauce is different for each dish with specific requirements. With fried spring rolls, a quality dipping sauce bowl should be the harmonious combination of flavours such as fish sauce, lemon juice, sugar, pepper, minced garlic and chilli, and pieces of carrot, papaya or kohlrabi.

Dipping sauce for Spring Rolls


3. Best restaurants to enjoy Vietnamese Spring Rolls - Where to go?

Most Vietnamese restaurants offer fried spring rolls in their menus. You can look for the Vietnamese names if visiting a small local restaurant or eatery.

Some of the best restaurants to enjoy Vietnam spring rolls belong to the Viet Deli group, including the chains of Ngon Villa, Home and the Chopsticks in Hanoi, Hoi An, Danang, and Saigon.

                           Vietnamese Spring Rolls


More suggestions for the best restaurants to enjoy Vietnamese Spring Rolls:

New Day Restaurant - No. 72 Ma May street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
Noodle and Roll - No. 39C Ly Quoc Su street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
Wrap and Roll - No. 62 Hai Ba Trung street, Ben Nghe, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Propaganda Bistro - No. 21 Han Thuyen, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City or B2-01, Saigon Center Takashimaya, 65 Le Loi, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City

If you want to make sure fried spring rolls will be in your Vietnam holiday trip, contact our INSIDE TRAVEL Expert Team to get a completely bespoke tour program. In case you are much interested in Vietnamese cuisine, check out our ready-made Culinary Tours which is specially designed to show travellers the best of the country’s food culture. Live and eat as the locals do.
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