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Summer Rolls

8 (8-1/4-inch) round dry rice paper wrappers
12 medium shrimp, cooked, peeled and halved lengthwise down the center
2 oz. dried rice sticks or rice vermicelli, cooked and drained, according to package
One bunch each of fresh mint, basil and cilantro
Julienned carrot sticks
Romaine or Bibb lettuce leaves
1 English cucumber, peeled and cut into sticks about 4 inches long

Fill a stockpot or deep saucepan with a couple inches of water, not boiling but as hot as you can touch. Evenly submerge one wrapper for about 30 seconds, or until it is soft and pliable.

Remove from the water and place on a work surface, such as a large wooden cutting board.

Working quickly, lay 3 shrimp halves in a row, cut side up, just above the center of the wrapper. Layer a few mint leaves, basil leaves, and a couple sprigs of cilantro. Add a small amount of noodles, cucumber and carrot pieces, and lettuce.

Fold the bottom half of the rice paper wrapper over the filling. Holding it firmly in place, fold the sides of the wrapper in. Then, pressing firmly down to hold the folds in place, roll from the bottom upwards until the rice paper sticks to itself to seal the roll. Turn each roll so that the rice paper seam faces downward and the row of shrimp faces up. Place in a single layer on a plate or in a casserole dish. Serve rolls with Thai or Vietnamese dipping sauces (a good homemade mixture is peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce and crushed red pepper).

NOTE: Soaking time of the rice paper wrappers varies with the brand/thickness and the heat of your water. Spring roll wrappers are available in Asian grocery stores.
Servings: 8 rolls

Contributor: Karin Shank

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