May 27, 2013

Rice Paper Rolls with Peanut and Mustard Dipping Sauces

I've always been intrigued by Rice Paper Rolls. They are dry, thin sheets of rice that become translucent when you immerse them in warm water. I love the idea of blurred colours of the vegetables stuffed in them popping through the sheets, waiting to be dipped into spicy sauces.

I found Rice Paper rolls in a store inside Crawford Market here in Mumbai. They are a bit expensive because they are imported but they are worth every rupee. They are perfect to make rolls or wraps and I'm sure would taste great with sweet stuffing.


What I love about them is that you can do so much with them. You can stuff them with thin noodles or lots of lovely raw vegetables. It doesn't have to be the same every time.

To make them you need:

Rice Paper
A continuous supply of hot water
A large deep plate big enough to fit one rice paper sheet in it

Cooked Rice Vermicelli Noodles (optional)

Any of the following:
Cabbage
Purple Cabbage
Peppers- Red, Yellow and Green
Carrots
Leeks
Sauteed Mushrooms
Sauteed Spinach, Chard, Kale
Coriander to Garnish

Chop all the raw vegetables into long, thin slices.

Dipping Sauces:

Peanut Sauce
2 tbsp Peanut Butter
1 Clove of Garlic
1/2 tsp lime juice
Red Chilli Powder(Optional)
Salt
Water

Mustard Sauce
3 tsps Whole Yellow/Black Mustard
1 Red Chilli
1/2 inch piece of Ginger
1/4 tsp vinegar
Salt
Water

Sriracha (because it makes everything better)

To make the sauces, grind the ingredients of each sauce until smooth.

To assemble the dish, pour a little of the hot water into a plate. Now carefully immerse the rice paper roll in it while keeping it pressed so that it doesn't roll up. Be careful not to burn yourself. Once the rice paper has gone from white and hard to translucent and lose, it is ready. Carefully pick it up without folding it and put it on a dry plate. Add you choice of stuffing in the center in a line leaving at least 2 inches space along the top and bottom edges. You can also add a bit of the sauces inside the roll. Working quickly, roll the top and bottom of the rice paper towards the stuffing and then do the same with the sides. Either top it with your sauces or serve them separately. Garnish with coriander.

Continue to do the same with every sheet of paper while replacing the water in the plate as it gets cooler.



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