Photo of Vietnamese Spring Rolls (Cha Gio) courtesy of Secrets of the Red Lantern Cookbook! It’s gorgeous!
One of the books that is always near my nighstand is the absolutely stunning Secrets of the Red Lantern by Pauline Nguyen. I was in Los Angeles at the famous Cook’s Libarary bookstore and was drawn in by the gorgeous cover artwork. I picked up the volumous 345 page book and simply could not put it down. No, seriously, I did not let this baby out of my sight the rest of the trip and even chose to pack my laptop in my suitcase and instead brought Secrets of the Red Lantern in my carry-on baggage.
Baby, that’s true love.
I got a chance to chat with the lovely Pauline Nguyen last night and just couldn’t wait to share her recipe for Vietnamese Spring Rolls or Cha Gio with you. At her restaurant, Red Lantern, this dish is called “Red Lantern Crisp Parcels.”
Secrets of the Red Lantern book is part cookbook, part bittersweet memoir of the Nguyen family’s escape from war-ravaged Vietnam and their struggles as they adapt to the harsh refugee life and finally making their lives in Australia. Pauline bares her soul in this debut book – it will make you smile, laugh, cry and even fume with anger. There are links at end of post to others who have written fabulous reviews of her book, so I won’t go in much detail here, but I wanted to give you a glimpse of Pauline, mom of Mia and soon to be mom of baby #2. Oh yes, and to give you her recipe for Vietnamese Spring Rolls too!
Pauline Nguyen, author of Secrets of the Red Lantern
Pauline lives in Australia and I live in Florida, so you can imagine the very thin snippet of the day where our two schedules can meet for an uninterrupted phone call! Luckily, I’m a total night owl and call her 12:30AM my time, which was 4:30PM her time. And guess where she took my call?
Ooooh….I wanted to be right there on the beach with her! Oh yeah.
Pauline Nguyen took two years off from the busy restaurant business (oh yes, Red Lantern is the name of her restaurant she owns with her brother Luke and partner Mark) to write this book, and she penned this memoir as a heirloom for her now 4-year old daughter, Mia.
More on my phone chat with Pauline Nguyen in another post (and yes, another recipe from her book in the next post too). In the meantime, enjoy her recipe for Vietnamese Spring Rolls (Cha Gio).
If you’d like to learn step by step photo instructions on how to roll the Vietnamese Spring Rolls correctly – come see the recipe of My Mother’s Famous Chinese Egg Rolls.
The Chinese version uses similar wrapper and same wrapping technique, just different filling inside. If you’d like a gluten-free version, use rice paper instead of these Spring Roll or Egg Roll wrappers. These are wonderful fried as well. Just follow instructions on package of rice paper to use.
Vietnamese Spring Rolls Recipe (Cha Gio) (Red Lantern Crisp Parcels)
For the Vietnamese Spring Rolls:
- 2 3/4 ounces dried bean thread noodles (or mung bean noodles)
- 1 3/4 ounces dried mushroom strips, such as wood ear mushrooms or Chinese black fungus
- 1/2 pound ground pork
- 1/2 pound ground chicken
- 1 pound carrots, grated
- 1/2 onion, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 teaspoons fine white pepper
- 1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
- 20 spring (egg) roll wrappers, 8½ inches square
- Dipping fish sauce, for serving
For the Dipping Sauce Recipe (Nuoc Mam Cham):
- 3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 bird's-eye chili
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- Soak the noodles and mushroom strips separately in cold water for 20 minutes, then drain and drip dry in a colander. Cut the noodles into 1½-inch-long pieces, then combine with all of the filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
- Cut the spring roll wrappers diagonally to form two triangles, then separate them into single sheets. Place a piece of wrapper on a plate with the base of the triangle facing you. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the mixture onto the middle of the bottom edge of the wrapper and fold the two adjacent sides, one on top of the other into the center. Roll toward the apex to form a nice firm roll, and secure with a dab of flour mixed with some water. Repeat until you have filled all of the wrappers.
- When freshly rolled, the cha gio can be deep-fried in oil preheated to 350 degrees F or until a cube of bread dropped in the oil browns in 15 seconds. Alternatively, you can store them in the freezer and cook when needed. Just carefully slide frozen spring rolls (do not defrots) in the oil and cook an additional minute or so.
To make the Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Mam Cham):
- Combine the fish sauce, rice vinegar, 1/2 cup of water, and sugar in a saucepan and place over medium heat. Stir well and cook until just before boiling point is reached, then allow to cool. To serve, finely chop the garlic and chile and stir in the lime juice. To liven it up, add pickled vegetables.
Reviews on Pauline Nguyen’s Secrets of the Red Lantern Cookbook
White On Rice Couple – plus recipe for Tamarind Crab and Tamarind Shrimp
Global Gourmet – plus recipe for Steamed Cockles or Periwinkle, Bittermelon Stuffed with Pork and Black Fungus, Wok-tossed Water Spinach
with Fermented Bean Curd Sauce
and of course good ‘ol Amazon.com where you can purchase the Secrets of the Red Lantern book.
ONE PROBLEM: YOU MUST BE INSANE TO USE 1 T SALT and 2tsp PEPPER IN THESE. Try 1 tsp and 1 tsp. And I love salty food but sorry, that level is certifiably mental.
OTHER THAN THAT ONE OF BEST S.E.ASIA DISHES WE’VE EVER MADE. I’d totally wheel this out with Thai or Chinese both of which we cook a lot of. Penang curry for instance! I would short-list it for trying to impress a guest. We want to get into Vietnam cooking but so far aren’t at all experienced. We made as directed but 1) 2tsp salt and that still too much; 2) about half the carrot you suggest (225g); 3) 1.2 lbs pork (550g) and no chicken. Result was exactly 800g for 20 wrappers. Sweet.
One special note: I normally live for the dipping sauce but these were already 9/10 with no sauce at all. I mention that only if it saves someone the trouble of making the sauce, though the sauce is also phenomenal. I’m sure this would be great with any of the other standard sauces from the region as well.
We froze half the batch raw and will see how they come out.
That one is great! You can also roll it with cabage
The instructions in this recipe on how to fold the egg roll is different from the step by step instructions you linked. I’m wondering if I’m supposed to cut the wrapper to form two triangles or not.
Hi Ellen, the authors of the book like to cut the wrapper into triangles, but I’ve found that it makes the wrapper too small to properly wrap. Also, it causes the filling to fall out. I use the entire wrapper (plus it makes the spring rolls more crispy).
As this recipe is not cooked before frying, ( unlike your mums recipe ) can I cook them in a dry fryer?
Yes you can, however, I would roll the Spring Rolls thinner, to ensure the ingredients cook through.
Can these be rolled ahead and frozen? I’m planning appetizers for New Years Eve and am looking for things I can make ahead. I”ve made your other egg rolls on multiple occasions and they are fantastic! Even though my rolling still needs work. Thanks
Yes! Roll ahead, freeze in a single layer. I put them on a paper plate, then put paper plate into a freezer bag. When ready to cook, don’t defrost, just gently slide them in the oil and add an extra minute or so. jaden
I made Mother’s egg rolls and they turned out great. I used ordinary green cabbage and perhaps I should have used Napa Valley Cabbage the recipe didn’t specify. In any event, these are without doubt the best egg rolls I have ever made. Thank you and Mother for the recipe. Sincerely, Larry White, Courtenay, B.C.,Canada
Thank you Larry!
My aunt made these and I thought that they were a family recipe (we’re Chinese). Imagine my surprise when I asked her for the recipe and she gave me this link! They are so delicious! She just brought them to Christmas and her full tray was gone before the other appetizers were even half finished!
What’s up mates, its enormous paragraph on the topic of educationand
completely explained, keep it up all the time.
I miss Vietnamese spring rolls! By the way do I need to precook the ingredients for the filling first before wrapping them? Many thanks!
I precook the ingredients first, just a quick stir fry to season and cook. Otherwise you run the risk of undercooked interior and burnt skin.
I have been looking for this recipe for a long time. Years ago a refuge family from Vietnam lived in the neighborhood. In exchange for “English lesson” which were mainly afternoons talking about our children, she offered to teach me to cook. But mainly we talked and ate and Vietnamese spring rolls were a favorite of mine. I so remember the pork and the carrots! Lan and her family relocated very quickly to the mid west and I never got the recipe. This sounds so close, I can’t wait to try them!
I am anxious to try this recipe. I did recently purchase what said to be rice roll wrappers, but don’t look anything close to what I have seen in these pictures. They look dry and brittle. Unfortunately for the poor student, I will be cutting all the vegetables by hand. I am curious on the details of the mentioned book. I will be checking it out at my local book giant. Will let ya know how it turned out.
you can still use rice wrappers and fry them or use them like this: Vietnamese Summer Rolls ~jaden
love cha gio. i also like the non fried vietnamese spring roll.
my favorite fillings are shrimp (grills if possible) and ground chicken with carrots, shitake mushroom and some herb.
This recipe is awsome for my son’s and his beautiful bride’s upcoming wedding. I was looking for a recipe for some Asian appetizers to make, to honor the part Vietnameze heritage of my future daughter in law. It’s funny her maternal grandfather’s last name was Nguyen, they were in Vietnam searching for long lost relatives this summer…sad story, very difficult to find any information, as they tell me the last name Nguyen is very common in Vietnam because of the Nguyen dynasty.
Thanks to you and Pauline for this wondrful recipe, aand if I can’t win the book I will definetely buy it, I know it will make a very nice gift 😉
Did I miss it, who won the cookbook??? 🙂
Love the pork and shittake mushroom combo, all minced together. Just like I had them when I went to Vietnam this fall!
The vendor at my church in Bandung, Indonesia sold the best spring roll. He would spread the spring roll skin with a combination of Javanese brown sugar cooked with diluted cornstarch the he would cook the filling on the spot of mashed garlic and shallot, lots of beansprouts,chopped jicama and chopped bamboo shot. He did not fry the spring roll instead he put all the filling over the diluted cornstarch and brown sugar and wrapped them with a fresh spring roll skin…and he would add lots of sambal oelek if I request for an extra spicy one!
My hubby makes really yummy spring rolls with crab meat instead of shrimps,pork,jicama, cabbages, carrots, bean thread noodle, blacfungus and his secret seasonings…and they are sooo good.
I like my springrolls with shrimp and cilantro!
Grated turnip, carrot, mushroom and pork seasoned with lots of pepper would be great in spring rolls!
My favorite filling is my mom’s popiah filling made with shredded jicama, cabbage, carrots, pork, shrimp, and a whole lot more!
Just by reading your post I’m completely sold and intensely craving spring rolls. I prefer my with bean thread/veggie/pork filling but when necessity and/or boredom strikes I grab just about anything from the fridge.
I’d like Pork and veggies in mine. I love spring rolls, much lighter and crisper than egg rolls.
When it comes to spring rolls, I go with the classic bean noodles, pork and shredded veggies. Of course, anything tastes good deep-fried, so I’m not going to be fussy!
Jaden, I have a question about this recipe. Are you SURE it contains one POUND of carrots, grated? That seems like a lot for one pound of ground meat. I thought maybe it was a typo of some kind. Curious cooks want know! If I had the cookbook, I could check, but alas not.
I like shredded carrots, mushrooms, celery, cellophane noodles, wood ears, and bamboo shoots in my spring rolls- meat optional.
I’m a firm believer in everything tastes good in a spring roll. My dormmate and I would essentially take any leftover meat that we had, wrap it with some lettuce, cucumbers, herbs and noodles and that’d be our delicious healthy dinner. As for the fried variety, it wouldn’t be complete without taro.
I like mushrooms & scallions with cream cheese. Delicious! Also, fried egg with caramelised onion.
I like shitaki mushrooms, bamboo shoots, shrimp and pork, with a few beanspouts and shredded carrots! Yum! Yum!
Hi. Thanks for the great post. I think I would want a vegetarian filling…because I have 2 daughters who are vegetarian and it would be nice to learn to cook for them – lol – lol – what a mom! Jeannie
I was just looking for a recipe for Vietnamese spring rolls (the fried variety) and this is perfect!
For the variety that’s not cooked, I like to put finely sliced cucumbers & leeks, ground pork sauteed in garlic, rice vermicelli, mint and coriander leaves.
For the fried variety I like ground pork & mung bean noodles. I’m not a big fan of carrots but if they’re in there I’ll eat them. To be honest I’d wrap a lot of strange things in the egg roll wrappers but they wouldn’t be spring rolls anymore if I filled them with mozzarella cheese, sun dried tomatoes and a fresh basil leaf.
My sister can cook up some great home style vietanmese food. I would love to cook like her but she cook from memory. I have got to get her to write these recipes down.
She made me this awesome cha goi with taro root and tofu filling, um, um, good!!!
noodles, pork, carrots and ‘shrooms and cabbage. Would add shrimp but found out late in life I am allergic to shellfish. 🙁
Shrimp, pork and mushrooms, oh my! That’s kind of weird…
Ground pork, carrots, cabbage, bean thread noodles very yummy and of course any seafood especiallt shrimp!!
Oh Jaden, I’m so glad you’re featuring this book! It’s my favourite Viet cooking book (along with Into The Vietnamese Kitchen, so it’s not just me being biased cos I’m an Aussie too); the food and recipes are so accessible and incredibly delicious, with the emphasis on fresh and raw herbs and salady stuff, local ingredients and contrasting textures – perfect for the Australian climate. A must-have for the book shelf.
Pauline Nguyen’s story is absolutely riveting if heartbreaking at times. I remember this period in Australian history very well and her descriptions of the time and place and culture are so evocative. The immigrants who have come into this country have done so much for the culture and food (just for starters) – we’d still all be eating meat & 2 (mushy) veg and salads only ever composed of iceberg lettuce and tinned beetroot. And thinking that slapdash Spag Bol was the epitome of chic international cuisine …
(sorry for the long post! I’m just enthusiastic and you are SO LUCKY getting to meet / talk to these amazing people – but then you’re pretty amazing yourself so I can’t hate you for it ::grin::)
I love my spring roll with shrimps, lettuce, carrots, mango, bean sprout, spring onions dipped in sweet sauce. So it’s a combination of sweet n salty. Love is always sweet and salty at times… and there maybe some sour and bitter. I believe that’s the journey of love.
I love chocolate….spring rolls? Oh yeah….bananas, chocolate maybe a little peanut butter or better yet some chopped nuts! roll, fry, yum! drizzle with chocolate or caramel and serve with a dollop of whipped cream!
Mine will be a combination of shrimp, pork, carrots, cabbage, onions and shallots, served with a dash of light chili sauce. Spring rolls always make good appetizers, food-finger or snacks.
I love shrimp, pork, and chicken!. It’s all good!
I’ve never made spring rolls and have eaten them at restaurants. I like shrimp and pork and chicken.Would love to win the book and give a try to making them at home.I just found your blog again, after losing my blog list when my old computer died. So glad to read you again!
Surprised the recipe doesn’t have any herbs! I like just about anything in a spring roll, but I’d have to vote for shrimp if forced to make a choice. Okay, now I’m craving spring rolls.
Just learning to make spring rolls, so I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the book.I am sure it has wonderful recipes. I like shrimp, cabbage , carrots, and noodles. I Was looking for recipe for Vietnamese soup and found your website. Loved it and can’t wait to try recipes.
My mom’s cha gio recipe is top secret. But, without giving too much away, I can safely say that I always love a good pork-filled cha gio. Although recently I’ve been making mine with ground chicken, which has gotten rave reviews, as well.
Now I’m craving my mom’s cha gio and nuoc mam cham…
Anything but shell fish. Can’t wait to try these at home. Thanks
Sounds like you had a great chat with Ms. Nguyen. I think I need to take a trip to Australia now.
As for spring roll fillings? I’m not picky; I like ’em all…shrimp, vegetarian, pork, crab…I’ve never had beef which some people have mentioned, but I’ll bet I’d like those too.
my grandma’s cha gio filling is pork, crab, carrot, scallion, and black wood fungus.
The crispy spring rolls my Korean friend makes with beef, jap chae noodles, onion, carrot, napa cabbage and toasted sesame seeds are out of this world. I have tried and failed on many occasions to recreate them. 🙁 She won’t tell me the secret because she wants to make sure that I will always be her friend.
I like making sweetbread spring rolls.
Pork, noodles, carrots, cucumber and peppers.
Crab! Or shrimp. Or really, anything. I love spring rolls.
I love shrimp and pork in my spring rolls along with carrots, cucumber, cabbage, mint and mushrooms. That paired with a bright delicious dipping sauce make my day 🙂
Mmmm . . . cucumbers and pork with not too many noodles. But I’ll eat anything in a spring roll as long as the dipping sauce is good!
I like shrimp in my spring rolls! Yum!
Carrot, cabbage, mushroom — and the veggies have to still be crisp. There’s a restaurant near my mother owned by a guy whose car my dad used to fix that makes the best spring rolls, not too greasy and with everything still bright and fresh-tasting inside.
Spicy mayo crabmeat and shredded cucumber for me!
For me the best filling for Cha Gio should have shrimp and crab meat..
I love shrimp, shrimp, shrimp 🙂
Oooh! Lovely looking book! 🙂 Crossing my fingers 😉 Here’s what I like in my Vietnamese springrolls: shrimp, rice vermicelli, cilantro, vietnamese mint, carrots, cucumber! Mmmm!
Had this vegetarian one in the past that was lovely. Pretty much the recipe you shared with radish and water chestnut replacing the pork and chicken mince. Definitely my fav 🙂
I like to have shrimp, pork, mushrooms
Shrimp, bean thread, carrots, cilantro. Truth be told I like just about anything in spring rolls.
Shrimp, carrots, mushroom, pork
my mother makes it with taro, carrots, ground pork, black fungus and adds in an egg =)
It’s a hit and is usually gone as soon as it hits the table!
yum.spring rolls. crunchy XD
i really like the bean thread noodles in them.
I love cabbage… mm pork, and bean sprouts. I’ve honestly never made them before, but these are the basic things I like…
I like ground pork, thinly cut napa cabbage, shredded carrots, mung bean thread noodles in my spring rolls. Can’t wait to try this recipe though. 🙂
mmm. Shrimp, carrots, avocado… really fresh yumminess in general.
pork, shrimp, cabbage
I love your blog and the spring rolls are good just as written.
Oh man… my mom’s Thanksgiving cha gio has the best filling. She uses minced shrimp and pork with cabbage, carrots, glass noodles, and woodear mushrooms. So super freaking good!
Yum! Shrimp, pork, vermicelli, carrots.
I’m a big fan of veggies and chicken. But shrimp is always nice (except I made a promise years ago to only eat farm raised shrimp due to the ecological destruction harvesting shrimp does).
I like shrimp and pork in mine, BUT, the most important thing is the vermicelli~ 🙂 Vermicelli is such a wonderful product and has so many yummy uses!
I like shrimp in mine! That’s in addition to the ones you listed (noodles, sugar, fish sauce, mushrooms, white pepper, and carrots for color). Yum. And I love these fried and sliced and served alongside soup for then you get the lovely texture contrast of the liquid from the soup and the still-crisp but just starting to get soggy skins from the fried rolls. Somewhat like a savory version of crisp cereal in milk. But you can’t let it wait too long because then it gets too soggy and no fun. Yum…
mung bean noodles, chicken, shitake, wood ear, onion, fish sauce…
vermicelli, mushrooms, pork, cilantro, carrots and lime.
vermicelli, shitake, carrots, pepper, cilantro, pork
Great fan of your work from Down Under. The spring rolls are great as is. I endorsed the way Red Lantern serves it with lettuce – one savours the cool crispness of the lettuce with the savoury crunch of a well fried spring roll. Very satisfying….
shrimp, vermicelli, cilantro, carrots, maybe a pepper … mmm
Shrimp, vermicelli, cilantro, carrots, sprouts, and sometimes a little crab or pork too.
I love pork, carrots, taro, and mung bean cellophane verimicelli in mine. Thanks for the drawing, Jaden!
Mung beans! I love a fresh spring roll filled with mung beans and a sticky sauce to dip it in.
Ground pork or shrimp, please. This looks like a fabulous book!
Mushrooms,black fungus,vermicelli, shrimp or crab with hot chili sour sauce YUMMIE 😛
I saw a dutch version of this cookbook in the store and I wanted to buy it. I hope that I am that lucky to own an english version ;P
Mushrooms, all kinds of different wild mushrooms!
I like ground pork, shrimp/crab, shredded jicama, vermicelli and woodears in my spring rolls.
shrimp but love everything
I love vegetarian spring rolls. Lots of mung beans, tofu or mock duck, carrots and other veggies. What a great cookbook! Thanks
Everyone’s sleeping on super fresh cilantro … for me, preferably from my garden – yeah!
ummm…. shrimp and pork
pork and chicken….
how about this, some of each! 🙂
i’ve always had shrimp in my rolls, but i’d love to try her recipes with other fillings.
Pork filling. Not that I’d refuse anything else…
I think I’d have to go for the shrimp as well.
Chicken and pork
Shrimp are nice, but the only things you really need in your Spring Rolls is love.
I like to use pork, shrimp and chicken.
Would have to be sprimp and pork, I cannot wait to try this recipe, thank you for sharing
pretty much anything – not really picky because I love them all!
Vermicelli with pan fried tofu, peanut sauce, julien cucumber and cilantro.
pork and water chestnut with ginger and peanut butter (not from georgia though)
Ground pork, roughly chopped shrimp, diced scallop, julienned jicama & carrots, green onion, minced garlic, black wood ear mushroom and mung bean thread. Egg yolk as binder….
I love anything with shrimp in it!
shrimp and vegetables!
The traditional Vietnamese stuffing, of course: crabmeat and ground pork, with the usual vermicelli, jicama, scallion.
This recipe sounds awesome but I would love to replace the chicken/pork mixture with shrimp. Maybe add cilantro and a little crunch of finely chopped waterchestnuts?! I love a little “crunch” in the mix of the spring rolls 🙂 The book sounds fantastic by the way!
I like mine vegetarian, with lots of crisp veggies and plenty of bite – carrots, bean sprouts, cabbage, green onions. Yum! If we were talking ‘fresh’ spring rolls (uncooked with rice paper wrappers?), I’d add basil and cilantro… The DH, however, loves him some pork cha gio.
Makes my mouth water just thinking about it!
I was surprised to find neither shrimp nor crab in the recipe you posted. My mom also adds an egg yolk (using the whites to seal the cha gio) as well as shredded cabbage.
I love lots of veggies! Shredded cabbage, carrots, and maybe some shrimp.
but the best part is wrapping the crunchy roll in herbs(mint.cilantro etc.)and lettuce and dipping
shrimp, pork, cabbage, bamboo shoots, some ginger and cilantro
Just the way my mother makes it! – pork, onion, cellophane noodles, and Chinese black mushrooms
lots of cilantro!!
Love shrimp or pork filling. I would love to get my hand on this book. I should have looked at it when I was there. Pretty sure it was right next to the computer LOL!!!
Shrimp, green onions, mushrooms and cabbage.
Chicken and lots of veggies! Napa Cabbage, carrots, green onions, mmmmm my mouth is watering just thinking about it 🙂
I like shrimp the best… and whatever thin, crunchy, green vegetables I can find. Yum.
I like pork & shrimp, and sometimes chicken.
Smoked Duck and Cabbage
My favourite spring rolls ever are made by the vegan restaurant in town… I think it’s the mushrooms. Mmmmm…
I love veggie spring rolls!
i like shredded taro or chopped jicama in my spring roll with shrimp and pork. The taro brings this smooth creamy texture of the filling and when jicama is used, it gives a nice little crunch!
ground pork and shrimp w/lots of kinchay and onions!
crab + green onions
Vermicelli, pork, shrimp 🙂
vermicelli! (with other ingredients, but vermicelli being the star :D)
I like a shrimp filling the best. Very tasty!
I would like it to have shrimp, little potato diced, mushroom, ground meat & Vermicelli noodles.mmmm, delicious.
I am not a vegetarian, but am a big fan of vegetarian spring rolls with tofu, vermicelli noodles, shredded cabbage, Thai basil and cilantro, dipped in peanut sauce w/a nice dollop of sambal oelek. Tres yum!
My recipe for spring rolls has all of the above plus garlic and some jicama. My current experiment has taro strips, mushrooms, ground pork and coriander. Yummy…
Yummy! I like shrimp and crabmeat in my spring rolls.
Yum. Shrimp and lots of veggies in my springroll, please!
Mmmmmm, Vietnamese egg rolls are one of my most favorite things! I’m going to make these today and see how they stack up against my fav Vietnamese restaurant in town. The ingredients look pretty close. When it comes to Chinese egg rolls, I like roast pork, celery, scallions, carrots, mushrooms, ginger, garlic, soy, sesame oil, a touch of vinegar, and a bit of magic all rolled into a perfectly fried bundle of joy!
I like the recipe but I think it would be grand to drop the chicken and add a slice of crispy bacon and chive flower to the mix. I would then add a little peanut butter to the dipping sauce!
I’m not super picky about my spring rolls but I do think the best ones have a mung bean noodles and some mushroom- wood ear are my favorite. Otherwise, a little shredded carrot and cabbage plus chicken and green onion does please my mouth quite nicely.
Mushroom. Hands Down. Oh and crab. I grew up in Vietnam and got used to having the very authentic spring rolls. And that kills the rest of the American spring rolls for me. It’s sad…
Finally an eggroll recipe like my friend taught me! We add eggs, but no chicken.Whatever you do don’t skip the noodle
I would really be interested to find out what a bit of seitan was like in them and I do like a bit of spice, so maybe a little chilli and some veggies. Mmmmm
Oh springrolls, be still my heart. I’ll eat them filled with just about anything, but seafood is my favorite! Shrimp! Yum! Crab! Yum! I’d go for pork too! I’m not fussy! Thanks for the chance Jaden!
I just started eating seafood after more than 10 years as a vegetarian, so I’m wondering what shrimp springrolls would be like!
Anything with pork has to be good! But shrimp is a close second. This is a book I’d love to have in my collection. I just looked back at two volumes of Pei’s chinese (Taiwan)cookbook’s that I have had for 30 years. Fond memories.
Shrimp, scallions and mushrooms sounds delicious right now, though sometimes I’m in more of a pork, carrots and sprouts sort of mood. Either way, they’re delicious.
Yum! I’d likeo have these tonight, but will add a little sriracha to kick it up a notch or two!
Seriously, I AM going to have these tonight–thx!!
Thx for the chance to win–looks like an awesome book!
Shrimp with scallions.
As long as the springroll doesn’t contain sprouts or cabbage I’m a happy camper!
Pork or beef, green onions, garlic, a little ginger… yum. 🙂 Crab sounds like it would be amazing in a spring roll as well.
Swap in a little shrimp in place of ground chicken and Pauline’s recipe IS my favorite filling. Now where did I put my fish sauce, sriracha, and limes?
I’d love to read this! My spring roll? cabbage, carrots, mushroom, green onion, peanuts or cashews and ginger, please.
Thanks for the contest!
I’d like soba noodles, mango, pork, shrimp and butter lettuce.
I hope I win the book!!!!
I just have to have plenty of meat in my springrolls, preferably pork or chicken though I had some duck ones this week which were divine. Cabbage and carrots, bean sprouts and lots of seasonings and herbs.
Love the website, looking for any excuse to try out the recipes.
For my springroll, I like mixing ground pork, shrimps, tofu, bean sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cilantro and some spices.
I love veggies in my spring rolls: cabbage, mushroom, w/ cilantro and noodles!
Anything except shell fish. I love them too, but in my old age have developed allergies. Truly, I’ve never met a spring roll I didn’t like. I always thought they were to complicated to make, so never tried. How nice to find out they aren’t difficult at all.
I enjoy your site & check in daily for the great photos & recipes. Thank you for sharing. ;o}
I read the recipe with interest, to see how close to my mom’s recipe. Our recipe does not use chicken, just pork, and we don’t add sugar,salt or pepper, either (we probably use more fish sauce though, to account for the missing salt).
One thing we do is sautee all the vegetables together, and we use bean sprouts as well. I run the onion through my food processor so that it mixes better with the meat mixture.
Another difference is that we use rice paper to roll our mixture in. I thought this was typical of Vietnamese rolls?
The whole process – for our family – takes about two hours from start to eat, since we have to wait for the cooked veggies to cool.
I think other egg rolls just don’t compare to Vietnamese rolls and like them just like this. Since I’d love to win this book for my mom, who was born in Saigon and left Vietnam when she was 3, I’ll share what I like to wrap my rolls in instead.
Inside of a huge piece of lettuce I like to have cilantro and a mint leaf or two. That’s it… no pickled carrots or cucumber or even bean sprouts. 😀
spring rolls with pork and vegies.
Shrimp and pork,garlic, veggies, yumm.
I like them simple — cabbage, carrottes, water chestnuts.
Shrimp, pork, fish sauce, green onion, ginger. Yum 🙂
Pork and cabbage…. shrimp…. bean sprouts… anything but beef!
I would love crab in my rolls. Especially fresh sweet dungeness crab. It’s such a luxury to crunch into a delicate roll and find the sweet meat in there. Otherwise as a typical filling it would need to be pork or shrimp.
I love mung bean sprouts and cabbage with a little 5 spice powder in mine…yum!
Umm, I just like spring rolls, I have not met one yet that I did not love, so hard to say if I have a fav filling…I just like to be filled up with them!
How about some crab, sweet corn and some spring onions!
I would like lots and lots of vegies. Chicken, beef, or pork… not picky.
My grandma makes the best spring rolls but im not sure what’s in them. I think I’ll need to find out!
My mom makes the BEST fresh spring rolls:
Tofu, shredded cabbage, carrots & green beans topped with a ground peanut/sugar mixture & cilantro (and a dash of hot sauce, depending on your taste!)….mmm!
Cabbage, shrimps, shiitake mushrooms and spring onions! Yummmm 🙂
Why mess with success? They are perfect the way Pauline makes them!
I’m pretty easy, just chicken, cabbage, carrots, onions, seasoning, and bean noodles.. I love to eat them with duck sauce, I know I shouldn’t put duck sauce on anything fried and Asian.. I just can’t help myself.
Shredded cabbage, scallions and shrimp. Those are the best in combination to send my taste buds into their happy dance.
I like a vegetarian spring roll: julienned carrots, red pepper, precooked sweet potato, and water chestnuts (for crunch), with shredded cabbage, finely chopped spring onions, and some sesame oil seasoning,and sweet-tangy peanut sauce on the side for dipping.
my favourite is chicken,shrimps,carrots cabbage and sprouts
Shrimp, scallions, and a little water chestnut. Yumm!
my favorite: chicken, lots of scallions, carrot, cabbage and cilantro.
Finely chopped onion, shredded carrot, spring onion and mung bean noodle, stir fried quickly with a dash of salt and pepper. Add in coriander/cilantro after removed from heat. I also like to add crab meat for a treat occasionally.
Shrimp, Mushrooms and noodles and I will be in springroll heaven 🙂
I would like some crab meat or tuna fish with fried chopped garlic and dried prawns to go along it to give it a punch.
as long as it has lots of bean sprouts and bamboo shoots iss all goood! Thanks J!
Pork and veggies, but when it comes to Spring Rolls I would take anything!
I love traditional Vietnamese spring rolls–pork, shrimp, bean sprouts, rice noodles, and basil, with that spicy peanut dipping sauce! Om nom nom. 🙂
tofu chicken ginger carrots
Lots and lots of vegetables!
I’m lucky enough to have eaten at the Red Lantern several times, and can say that the best spring roll filling is theirs! Anything else they make is amazing (oh my their fresh prawn rolls are to die for – insert mouth watering noises here).
Pork. Shrimp. Pork and Shrimp! (IS that possible?!)
Great photo! My spring rolls MUST have pork and lots of Chinese fungus (wood ear or cloud ear). I love spring rolls, especially hot from the fryer. YUM!
It must be fate. I saw this book today and was drawn to the cover. I almost bought it but was not sure. I have my share of bad cookbooks. My fav spring roll stuffing is shrimp. If I’m not the lucky winner I will have to go back and pick the book up. Thanks for the great site!
Shrimp! Shrimp! Shrimp!
I eat and love it all, every which way… that’s my problem ;o)And when someone else goes to the trouble of making these for me, I eat every last bite, with no favorites! I would so love a copy! That cover pic is stunning!
Shrimp. that’s the one key ingredient for me 🙂
A teaspoon minced crabmeat with fried dried shrimps and fried garlic added to the spring roll makes my appetite yearn for more.
I would like pork and shrimp.
some flaked white fish, cilantro, chopped mushrooms…yummm!
crabmeat or shrimp sound good too!
I love my cha gio with pork and taro. DEEE-LICIOUS!!
(I tried leaving but something weird happened with the computer. Sorry if this is a duplicate… although, it doesn’t seem to be.)
Lately, I’ve been thinking of crunchy water chestnuts in a pork & shrimp filling. [dreamy gaze]
Shrimp – fresh and crunchy! It’s funny I normally loathe shrimp but Chinese and Vietnamese cooks are the ONLY people who seem to understand how to handle these delicate animals and bring out their best flavors and textures. Even Koreans (my ethnicity) miss the boat on that!
I want that cookbook so bad!
Make mine with Shrimp & napa cabbage! Or pork or anything! Secrets of the Red Lantern sounds like a wonderful perspective of life in that tumultuous time. Thanks again for something else I wanna try!
I’ve always loved spring rolls but never got around to making it. Too much work and not enough mouths to feed 🙂
I can imagine my spring rolls to have cubes of pan- fried pork luncheon meat, minced prawns, a little finely sliced chilli padi (small fiery chillis), lots of grated turnip (sengkuang) & carrot, julienne cucumber, and a little tung hoon. Yummy…..
I love the Vietnamese kind, cha gio with shrimp and pork. Yummy!
I like very peppery shrimp and leek in my spring rolls. Yumm!
Yummmmmyyy!! This looks so good! I would put shitake mushrooms, finely sliced green beans, carrots, water chestnuts, ground pork, vermicelli noodles, chopped shrimps, onion, garlic. I also love your Mom’s spring rolls! I will have to restock on that as well. 😉
Mung bean noodles………can’t get enough of them…..
definitely shrimp and fresh basil, sprouts, cabbage , all so yummy. Love the picture.
My husband is an absolute fanatic about Vietnamese spring rolls. We used to live within 10 minutes of a fabulous place that had spring rolls to die for! They included tons of fresh leaf lettuce, cilantro, mint, basil, yummy pickled carrots, plus nuoc mam! We now have to make a 50 mile round-trip for those beauties. I’d love to give this book to my husband for V-day. BTW, we prefer the “traditonal” pork/noodle/vegie filling, and little heat is appreciated. Love the recipe and picture!!
Some nice sweet shrimp and crabmeat to start,some tiny diced pieces of fried tofu , little cabbage, shiitake mushroom,coriander, a little bit of chopped garlic and a small splash of sesame oil- fried up in the wrapper, wrapped in a lettuce leaf and dipped in some nuoc cham my mouth is watering now just thinking about it – and maybe some fried egg with shrimp on the side
sigh, just the thought makes my tummy happy
Make mine pork, please! Yep, I’m a porker, alright!
Add some bean threads, shredded carrots, garlic and mushrooms…mmm-mmm!
Must have a fish sauce, dipping sauce, with lemon juice, water, garlic and sliced chilis, too!
This does look good — I like all kinds of egg rolls (and lots of different dipping sauces).
When I make them at home, though, I do a pretty American egg roll — ground pork, browned, add some ginger and garlic, stir-fry with cabbage (salted and drained), carrots, onion. Add some soy sauce and some sesame oil. Serve with a nice soy-sauce-vinegar-sugar-hot-pepper-green-onion-garlic-ginger dipping sauce.
These egg rolls are well loved in my family, and are a Christmas tradition.
Even though I will never give up my old favorite, I’d love to get a cookbook with even more good things to try. You can’t ever have too many recipes.
French beans, tofu, jicama, shrimp, bean sprouts, carrots! Maybe some crushed peanuts too! Thank you for these random contests 🙂
My husband is vietnamese and I learned to make spring rolls from my mother-in-law. The recipe is very similar to the red lantern’s except I add shrimp. I think I need to make some this week after reading your post!
I like mine with jicama, shitake mushrooms, and pork.
mmm! my rolls always need to have some protein in it, chicken or pork or shrimp or crab. . . man, i’m craving some now!
Sounds like a very interesting book. Recipes and memoir togther are something I really enjoy. I like chicken, mushrooms, carrot and more in my spring rolls.
Ooooh, I’ll take them any way I can get them. But I especially love wrapping them in lettuce w/mint and Vietnamese coriander! YUM
It is normally viewed as the filler but I really appreciate the cabbage.
I think that shredded chicken, mushrooms, and some chili would be good. Haven’t made it before, but I will if I get the book. I’ll even post pictures! 🙂
shrimp and cabbage…yum
My favourite filling is a mix of vegetables like carrot, french beans, cabbage, capsicum and green peas all cut long and stir fried with onions, pepper and some soya sauce. Its very simple to make and a sure winner each time I need a quick snack for friends over for poker or something.
Btw, that book cover does look brilliant!
Oops that’s every summer, not Grand Rapids summer (I hate typos)!!
I love Vietnamese Spring Rolls. Used to get them at Festival in Grand Rapids summer. I would never think I could make them myself. Looks so good, yummmm!
I like tofu and veggies in my filling.
I’ll eat any of the fillings, but my fave is shrimp!
Shrimp. Basil. Noodles. Something crunchy – cabbage/carrots. Yum. Chilis. Need some heat.
i like veggies, like napa cabbage and shiitake mushrooms
I like the porky ones. It’s all about the pig! I could eat my weight in spring rolls.
I’d like pork and shrimp, please.
I also like shrimp in my spring rolls. I am definitely going to look for this book. I ventured into a neighborhood Vietnamese grocery store this past week and felt like I was in heaven! Only problem is, I’m not Asian and I don’t know many Asian recipes. The Red Lantern Cookbook would remedy that situation. I did walk away from the grocery store with packaged satay marinade, the yummiest peanut sauce ever and a package of krupuk. Oh, and some yummy ginger candies. Dinner that night was divine.
Don’t add me to the giveaway, I’m already a lucky owner of this fabulous cookbook. I just wanted to say that the cha gio photograph is beautiful! It’ll make all Vietnamese proud.
My mouth watered when I saw this post, super duper delicious!
Cha Gio was my first glimpse into the wonderful world of Vietnamese Cuisine…and it remains one of my favorite dishes! I could eat dozens of these…my favorite kind is filled with peppery ground pork. I SO want this cookbook, for once, can I be lucky and win? 🙂
I love shrimp and veggies in my spring rolls! (and this cookbook)
My favorite Vietnamese restaurant closed, but I loved their spring rolls with shrimp and pork. I became addicted to the iced coffee.
I’m in the same boat as Jaime – she’s only 4-1/2 hours from the nearest Vietnamese restaurant, I’m about 800 miles away from the nearest GOOD one. However, having spent most of my life in Vancouver, where there is a large and vibrant Asian community (including Vietnamese, Cambodian, Thai, etc.) I can safely say that there has never been a spring roll I didn’t like. Regardless of what’s in ’em.
What an awesome book. Looks wonderful and even if I dont win, Im going to get a copy.
Spring rolls.. Hmmm fave would have to be veggies. I love veggie spring rolls. Followed by a close second with pork. Yummmyyy
Pork-pork-pork. Will be making this soon along with your fab pho.
Bring on the meat, baby! We are all about Cha Gio!
I like pork and veggies in spring rolls. This sounds like a great cookbook.
I don’t know how to make it but I’d love a mini spring roll filled with sweet yam (taro) paste, for dessert. I believe yam (taro) paste is a Teochew specialty, and it’s called “or nee” in that dialect. The sweet smooth taro paste tastes so heavenly in a crispy spring roll.
Yum! I could go for shrimp, napa cabbage, and plenty of garlic or garlic chives in mine!
I like fillings that include pork, julienned cabbage, carrots, green onions and taro! Everything’s got to be julienned though. I’m funny that way.
I love Vietnamese spring rolls and we recently moved to a small town where the closest Vietnamese food is 4 1/2 hours away!! I love whatever happens to be in them.
I love pork, shrimp, and my mother used to make a few with cheese.
I love any ingredient in spring rolls. Chicken, Turkey or Shrimp being the majority of what I’ve eaten. Although I’ve put bananas, nutella and a sprinkling of cinnamon sugar for a delicious deep fried dessert version. Vanilla ice cream is optional.
I like either pork or shrimp with a little tofu.
This recipe looks almost identical to what I would make, save the chicken part, which I would like to try. But I would also add reconstituted dried shiitake mushrooms/black mushrooms, julienned.
Secrets of the Red Lantern Cookbook looks like a “must have”!
I prefer veggie rolls, myself. You and Diane are making me want this book more and more… and now I have something to make with those wrappers besides ravioli!
I love pork, shrimp and all kinds of vegetables.
Pork, shrimp and veggies – yummy!
I would love shrimp, scallions and ginger….plus chilis!
I like mine with shredded pork (not ground), shredded bamboo shoots, chinese mushrooms and wood ear fungus.
pork shrimp vegies are good for me
sure could use that book
These look wonderful. I prefer shrimp in my spring rolls / egg rolls but the family prefers chicken. Making egg rolls tonight and the book would come in handy I am sure.
crisp veg’s to accent the crisp wrapper…there’s a place nearby that does that and that’s the reason I will choose spring rolls hands down before an egg roll…they’re so much lighter too and with a fresh mustard sauce, yummmmmmmm!
I prefer the ones with pork.
I love shrimp in mine!
Shrimp and pork. I would love to win this book. It looks beautiful.
I realize this may sound like heresy – but a little peanut butter really perks up spring rolls. It’s one of the “secrets” of Chicago old-school Chinese restaurants. It’s subtle but very addictive…
Can’t wait to try this recipe….my springroll filling would absolutely have to have fresh shredded ginger!! Hope I get picked for the cookbook!!
I like chicken and veggies with no carrots and very little cabbage.
Love your site, btw and the chinese new year recipes!! i love crispy egg rolls with veggies like carrots and sprouts and yummy pork or chicken and beanthread noodles. I used to get it at least once a week from the restaurant in town when i went to my night class!! Love tht book, goodluck to all readers and myself at that. Thank you for the opportunity to win this beautiful book!! 🙂
I make egg rolls with lumpia wrappers and inside I use bean thread, ground pork, fish sauce, maggi sauce, green garlic (when available), shredded carrot and cilantro.. all chopped super fine.. the lumpia wrapper gets so crispy, I got very light on the filling so we can celebrate the crispiness.. usually wrap in romaine lettuce leaves.. my mouth is watering!!!
I prefer veggie fillings, even though I’m not a vegetarian … yet.
The crispness and lightness of the roll is complemented by the veggies, imho. My second fav is veggie and shrimp, but I’ve yet to meet a spring roll I didn’t devour with great pleasure.
I love shrimp!
What a great recipe and what a great giveaway. THanks.
Pork and shrimp, for sure! I miss Australia so much…
Shrimp and veggies. Always my favorite! I can’t wait to try making these at home. What a treat:)
The sweet lady who runs the asian food store in my town makes these. Always delicious. She makes her own kimchi too.Needless to say, it’s my favorite place ever.
My favorite filling is what my mother puts in her lumpia.Lots of ground beef and various veggies.Oh and a sprinkling of crack.I swear that’s her secret ingredient.
I love me some Spring Rolls and you are right that cover is beautiful!!
I personally can’t imagine spring rolls of any kind without finely shredded cabbage inside. I just love cabbage!
Oh… I would so much love this book.
My fav ingredients are shrimp and loads of fresh herbs and crunchy veggies! This recipe also sounds great, think I will try this afternoon. Thanks 🙂
I like mine with chicken and lots of colorful vegetables.
You always make me hungry!
I think from a Vietnamese spring roll, I tend to favour things like shredded pork, maybe a tiny bit of carrot, some shredded cabbage, a bit of dried black mushroom and a bit of vermicelli
With a sweet and spicy and fish-saucey dip.
My first love would be ground pork with bits of spicy black pepper and chopped cabbage.
My second would be juicy sweet shrimp!
Mmm now I want egg rolls!
shrimp and/or vegetables!
I have heard so much about this book, but I don’t ever win anything, lol. I love pork in spring rolls, but love vegetarian ones, too. Actually, I have never met a Spring Roll that I didn’t like. Bookmarking this recipe!
I like a delicate pork filling with vegetables in my rolls.
I like the ones with ground pork and carrots. I would Love to own this cookbook!
I’m a sucker for a crisp roll with a moist shrimp inside. Mmmm. Ok that’s it…. off to Sunflower for lunch.
I love this cookbook! i’ve been meaning to buy it for months