A light tasty sharing dish

It’s party time and here’s a recipe that you don’t have to cook at all – the perfect sharing dish for family and friends.

It’s super healthy, no heavy carbs or cream, and is fresh vibrant and bright. Just the thing after days of traditional feasting and cooking.

Fresh spring rolls are made using rice paper wrappers and lots of fresh vegetables and herbs. There are no hard and fast rules as to what you can put in. We use green mangoes – it’s very easy to find unripe mango – carrots, cucumber, spring onions, shredded lettuce, plenty of fresh mint and coriander…and if you want to up the ante or just use up your left over bird, cooked turkey will fit in nicely as do cooked prawns or avocado.

There are two ways to approach this recipe. One is to prepare a stack of spring rolls before your guests arrive and the other is to ask your guests to wash their hands and let them assemble their own.

The second option is very social and great fun. Prepare the various vegetables and so on that you have selected, cutting everything into a skinny julienne (matchsticks) and arrange them in bowls on the table Soak the vermicelli noodles and make the dipping sauce. At the last minute fill a couple of big bowls with hot water from the tap for soaking the rice paper wrappers and you are ready to go. Soak the rice paper wrappers until they are pliable; lay them on a dinner plate then fill with the vegetables and noodles

You will need to advise everyone to ignore their piggy instincts, as too much filling will make the rolling difficult and everything will want to spill out, other than that it’s a matter of assembling and munching to your heart’s delight.

Rice paper wrappers are available in our shop and little Asian shop in Spiller’s Lane. Because the wrappers are dried they have a long shelf life – not that they are likely to be hanging around for too long, as the likelihood is that they’ll become your latest addiction.

Fresh Spring Rolls


• Rice paper wrappers

• A small bundle of cellophane noodles/mung bean or rice vermicelli

• A green mango 

• Shredded lettuce –iceberg is ideal

• 1 carrot

• About 20cms cucumber

• 3 Spring onions

• A handful of bean sprouts

• Fresh mint and coriander

Soak the vermicelli noodles in hot water for five minutes, until soft, then drain.

Peel the mango and cut into thin slices then julienne into skinny strips.

Peel the carrot, cut into thin slices then julienne into skinny strips and chop in half

Cut the cucumber into quarters lengthwise, then remove the seeds, the slice thinly and chop in half.

Trim the spring onions then cut into thin strips.

Lettuce, sliced into thin ribbons.

Fill a bowl with hand hot water and soak one of the rice paper wrappers until soft and pliable. Shake off any excess water and lay onto a plate – not a wooden board, as this will dry the wrapper out.

Take a small amount of each of the above ingredients and lie across the middle of the wrapper, tuck in some mint and coriander, fold in the sides then roll up.

Eat immediately or cover with a damp cloth to prevent them from drying out.

Serve with the dipping sauce

Dipping Sauce


• 3tbs lime juice

• 2tbs Fish sauce/Nam Pla

• 2-3 Chillies

• 2 cloves garlic

• 1 dsp Sugar


Peel and chop the garlic and chop the chillies then mix together with all the other ingredients.

As always we will be madly baking at the shop in the run up to Christmas so there will be a great selection of cakes, tarts, nut roasts, mince pies, Christmas puddings and so on and if you’re wondering what to give someone for Christmas we have gift vouchers, cooking class vouchers and hampers. Pre-orders are welcome. There are plenty of gluten-free options.

Please pop in and see us.

Enjoy the festivities.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year.


Lettercollum Kitchen Project, 22 Connolly Street, Clonakilty




Karen Austin

Karen Austin is the co-owner of the Lettercollum Kitchen Project in Clonakilty.

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