Rice paper rolls

Being able to make rice paper rolls is a good skill to have – it might take a bit of practice at first but you’ll quickly get the hang of folding the rice paper over the ingredients so it’s firm but doesn’t rip. Dipping sauces are also really easy to make – just remember to try to balance the flavour so it’s not too salty, not too sweet.

Season: Summer, Autumn

Type:  Starters


Serves30 small rolls

Fresh from the garden:Asian greens, carrots, coriander, cucumber, eggs

Recipe source: Adapted from Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation


  • medium saucepan
  • colander
  • medium frying pan
  • scissors
  • knives – 1 large, 1 small
  • chopping boards and non-slip mats
  • measuring spoons
  • 2 medium bowls
  • mixing spoons
  • whisk
  • egg flip
  • large platter, to serve
  • citrus juicer
  • garlic press
  • 6 large flat bowls
  • 6 clean tea towels
  • small serving bowls


  • 120 g vermicelli noodles
  • 250 g firm tofu
  • 3 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon palm sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 2 large cucumbers
  • 1 large carrot
  • Asian greens
  • 1 cup Thai basil/Vietnamese mint leaves
  • 1 cup coriander leaves
  • Handful bean sprouts
  • 30 small rice paper

Dipping sauce:

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons castor sugar
  • tiny drop of chilli sauce

What to do

  • Set out your equipment and ingredients.

Prepare the noodles

  • Cook the vermicelli by adding it to a pot of boiling water for 3 minutes, then drain, run under cold water and drain again.
  • Cut the vermicelli into small chunks with the scissors over a bowl.

Prepare the tofu and vegetables

  • Slice the tofu into long, thin slices – about 5 mm thick by 50 mm long.
  • Mix together 2 teaspoons of soy sauce 1 teaspoon fish sauce and 1 teaspoon of palm sugar.  Marinate the tofu in this mixture.
  • Whisk the eggs in a bowl with a splash of soy sauce and fish sauce.
  • Put the frying pan on high heat and add the sunflower oil.  Pour the egg mix into the hot pan and cook until the egg looks like an omelette.  Remove from the pan, place on the chopping board and slice into long slithers.
  • Finely slice the cucumbers, carrots and Asian greens to the same thickness as the tofu.

Make the rolls

  • Half fill the large, flat bowls with hot (but not too hot so as to burn the students!) water. Lay the tea towels in front of the students, between the bowl and the student.
  • Put the rice paper into the water until starting to soften, remove and place on the tea towel.
  • Onto the rice paper place a small amount of vermicelli noodles, then a small amount of each ingredient.  Roll over once, fold over the loose ends onto the roll and then roll up again.
  • Place on the serving platter.

Make the dipping sauce

  • Crush the garlic and juice the lime.  Mix all the dipping sauce ingredients together.  Serve in a small bowl alongside the rice paper rolls.

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