DIY Rice Paper Rolls

banh hoi cabramatta
Standard DIY plus freshly squeezed orange juice
banh hoi cabramatta
Steamed parcels of thin vermicelli (banh hoi) with grilled pork and spring rolls

No 29 of my fav things of Cabramatta

Do-it-yourself rice paper rolls as opposed to mixing all the ingredients in a bowl is a more social way of eating. I guess it’s akin to opting for the kebab plate vs. kebab roll. I regard this as leisure food whereas the mixed bowl version is convenient and quick (no dirty fingers).

I don’t have a picture of the bowl version here but imagine the grilled meats on top of a bed of loose vermicelli with the salad underneath. The dipping fish sauce is then poured over the noodles as oppsed to dipping.

Ok let’s talk DIY rice paper rolls. It can be intimidating, the good thing about choosing a restaurant that specialises in it, is that you’ll probably have some other patron near by demonstrating how to eat it.

In summary: Make a roll.

1. You will be given dry hard rice paper rolls and a bowl of hot water. Dip (to moisten) the rice paper, be quick or it dissolves!

DIY banh hoi vietnamese
A stack of dried sheets of rice paper roll. They aren’t moistened for you as it will all stick together!
rice paper rolls banh hoi
A bowl of steaming hot water

2. Add a piece of vermicelli square. Note: this is a different version of vermicelli than that used in the mixed bowl version. This is called banh hoi (“bun hoy”) which is finer and thinner. It is steamed with some cornflour to create these rubbery little rectangles. I think its very clever to minimises mess. It also takes a lot more work to prepare (than loose vermicelli), and thus the slightly higher price for DIY dishes.

Creating a rice paper roll
Creating a rice paper roll

Top with salad (bean sprouts, cucumber, mint leaves, herbs) and grilled meat. Featured here is the grilled pork, thit nuong.

3. Fold in the sides and roll it up.

Yes ugly indeed
Yes ugly indeed
Doesn't look any better with side view either
Doesn’t look any better with side view either

4. Ready to eat. Simply dip into fish sauce (small bowl) and bite into your masterpiece (which hopefully looks better than mine!…I was particularly hungry that day and DIY are not meant to be quick work lunches).

Dip roll into the fish sauce and eat!
Dip roll into the fish sauce and eat!

Where? Phu Quoc, Shop 11/ 117 Corner John St and Hill St
P: 02 9724 2188
Phu Quoc on Urbanspoon

One thought on “DIY Rice Paper Rolls

  1. phu quoc is the best place to have DIY rice paper rolls. their banh hoi bac diet is really good value – seem to always share between the boy and i and we get plentyyyyy of rolls out of it.

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