Impress your friends with these fresh summer rolls with tiger prawns – a Vietnamese dish from the people behind restaurant Pho & Bun. Andy Le’s new Soho restaurant serves up a range of traditional Vietnamese dishes, as well as a modern twist on the popular Asian steamed bun.
This dish is perfect for sharing… (or for one hungry customer).
Makes 8 rolls
For the summer rolls:
8 sheets of rice paper (22cm in diameter)
12 King prawns/Jumbo prawns/Black Tiger prawns (better with the shells on)
20-30g of dry rice vermicelli (thin vermicelli works best)
1 iceberg lettuce
16 coriander sprigs, chopped
16 mint leaves
16 perilla leaves (similar to mint in taste and appearance, can be found in Asian supermarkets)
For the hoisin dipping sauce:
1 tbsp of vegetable oil
4 tbsp hoisin sauce
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp water
½ tbsp Sriracha chilli sauce
½ tsp of sugar
1 small shallot, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp of roasted peanuts, crushed
1. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and add a pinch of salt. When the water reaches boiling point add the prawns and cook for 2-2 ½ minutes depending on the size of prawns.
2. While waiting for the prawns to be cooked, prepare a bowl of ice cold water. Take the prawns out of the boiling water (keep the water) and put straight into the ice cold water, then when the prawns have cooled down, drain from the water. Peel the shells and cut the prawns in half lengthways.
3. Use the same saucepan and water used to cook the prawns and bring it back to the boil. Put the rice vermicelli in and cook for 6-10 minutes until the rice is soft. Drain the vermicelli and rinse under cold water to cool down and leave in a strainer to dry out.
4. Cut the iceberg lettuce in half and slice into thin strips. Wash in cold water and leave in a strainer to dry. Wash the herbs in cold water and also leave in a strainer to dry.
5. Prepare a deep bowl of warm water and a round plate to roll the summer rolls. Dip a sheet of rice paper into the water, take it out and lay on the plate. Put the thinly sliced lettuce on the bottom of the rice paper, and then put some vermicelli on top of the lettuce. Put 3 pieces of half-cut prawns with the red skin down on the middle of rice paper then put 2 leaves of each herb and coriander on top of the prawns.
6. Start rolling by folding the bottom of the rice paper into the centre then fold the 2 sides of rice paper inward like you’re making a gift box. Continue to roll the rice paper to the end. Try to roll as tightly as possible as this will affect the appearance and texture of the summer roll. Once finished rolling, put the summer rolls in a container and cover with a damp cloth until serving. This will help you to keep the summer rolls for at least 4 hours without being dried out.
Peanut dipping sauce:
Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat then fry the chopped shallots until soft and transparent. Add the hoisin sauce, peanut butter, chilli sauce, sugar and water and bring to a simmer. Let it simmer for 1 minute and leave to one side to cool down. Pour into a sauce dish and sprinkle with crushed peanuts on top. Enjoy the summer rolls by dipping into the sauce.
Pho & Bun | Pho & Bun, 76 Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 6ND
For something a bit meatier, try the Beef Pho recipe.