OK, I need you to settle something for me. Do you call THIS:
A spring roll? Or a salad roll? Or maybe, a summer roll? Because I need to know. My BFF and I had a disagreement about the name. I call them spring rolls, she calls them salad rolls. Tomato, Tomahto. I’m just going to go ahead and refer to them as spring rolls, OK? Tell me in the comments what you call them.
This salad was born out of laziness but then totally became its own amazing thing. I love to make fresh Vietnamese spring rolls (or salad rolls as some of you call them) in the summer because they are so pretty and fun to eat AND they are cold and you know I love cold food in the summer. But the thing is that those pretty little spring rolls are just so much work, right? All the slicing and prepping and layering and rolling. It takes me forever and then we demolish them in 3 minutes.
So I started using the leftovers for lunch the next day as basically the spring roll without the roll. And it turned into a spring roll/salad combo. All the spicy/sweet/tangy/fragrant flavors without all the work. And the peanut dressing is ESSENTIAL. It’s not a spring roll salad without peanut dressing.
For the veggies, be sure the slice them very thinly, or use a mandolin. I used to cut the carrots into thin medallions, but then I rediscovered my food processor grating attachment and it is my new favorite thing. It grated those carrots in about 0.3 seconds and they look super fancy and beautiful. If you don’t have a food processor you should get one ASAP (I have THIS one < affiliate link), but in the meantime you can grate the carrots on a box grater or do like I used to and slice them into thin medallions.
A few recipe notes:
- I used a purple carrot because purple is my favorite and I just like them. You can use any color carrot you want.
- If you don’t like spicy foods, start out with half a teaspoon of chili garlic sauce and then adjust to your preferences. I use 2 teaspoons and find it to be pleasantly spicy, but that is my preference.
- I used homemade peanut butter, so using natural will work best here. If you use a sweetened peanut butter, you might want to adjust how much brown sugar you add to the dressing.
- I used low sodium soy sauce. If you use regular soy sauce this will probably be too salty.
- Did you know that the easiest way to peel ginger root is with a spoon? I learned that from Martha Stewart.
Deconstructed Spring Roll Salad
For The Dressing:
- 1/3 cup peanut butter natural
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce*
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 tablespoons lime juice about half a lime
- 1 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 2 garlic cloves pressed or finely minced
- 1-2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce to desired spiciness
For the Salad:
- 1 pound Shrimp peeled and deveined,
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 4.5 ounces thin rice noodles I used half a package
- 5 cups mixed baby greens or other lettuce
- 3 green onions thinly sliced
- 2 medium carrots grated
- 1/2 cucumber cut into matchsticks
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil for the noodles
- Peanut Dressing see above
- fresh mint
- fresh basil
- black sesame seeds optional, for garnish
- To prepare vegetables, thinly slice the green onions crosswise into thin medallions. Slice the cucumber into thin matchsticks. Grate the carrot or slice into thin medallions. Chiffonade the basil and mint leaves for garnish, leave some leaves whole to toss with the lettuce.
- To cook shrimp, heat 1 tablespoon of canola oil in a frying pan over medium high heat. When oil is hot, add shrimp to pan and season with salt and pepper. Cook until they turn pink, about 1-2 minutes per side. Remove from heat and set aside.
- To prepare dressing, add all dressing ingredients to a blender, and blend until smooth. If it is too thick, you can add just a little water to thin it out.
- Prepare rice noodles according to package instructions. After draining, toss with 1 teaspoon of sesame oil to keep from sticking.
- To put together the salad, separate the lettuce into individual serving bowls, top with rice noodles, shrimp, cucumber, carrot, green onions, drizzle with peanut dressing, and top with the basil and mint chiffonade. Garnish with black sesame seeds if desired.
Be sure to use gluten free soy sauce if making this gluten free!
Do you ever make spring rolls? Does it take you as long to make them as it takes me (forever)? Do you have any lazy recipes that turned into favorites?
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