Deconstructed Vietnamese Summer Roll

Almost the end of July, and we are in the dog days of summer. The last few weeks, we’ve had temperatures in the upper 90’s and low 100’s, which isn’t bad, but then add the monsoon humidity on top of that, and its just gross. I think mother nature does that to remind us that dry heat is different – not better, but just different. As soon as the humidity broke, we hit highs in the 115-118’s – ooommppphhh. It’s hot. Even the over night lows are 90. Its never not hot, just various degrees of hell. Hahaha If you’ve lived here long enough, you know this is the price we must pay for 70 in December. Don’t have to shovel sunshine…. as the saying goes. So what do you do when its this stifling? You stay inside buildings with air conditioning. You drink lots of water. and you try not to cook. Summer rolls are fresh, mostly raw ingredients that are natural hydrators (made up of a lot of water, are cooling and refreshing. And there is minimal cooking involved! YAY! Even better, double the recipe and package this salad for lunch the next day!

Rice noodles take 2 min in boiling water, less than 10 minutes for the peanut sauce and it took me about 20 minutes to poach the chicken in white wine (which could be done ahead of time) – prep the rest of the ingredients and throw it in a bowl – VIOLA! dinner!


Summer Roll Salad 


8 ounces rice noodles (cooked per package directions)

2 cups red leaf lettuce, torn

1 cup red cabbage, shredded

1 cup cucumber, julienned

1 cup carrot, julienned

1 cup sprouts (bean, alfalfa, etc.)

1 red bell pepper, julienned

2 green onions

1/4 cup basil, torn

1/4 cup cilantro, torn

1/4 cup peanuts, unsalted

1/4 cup peanut sauce (separate recipe)

optional: tofu, poached shrimp or chicken


 assemble the ingredients evenly into 4 separate containers. Top with peanuts and protein. Add peanut sauce immediately prior to serving

Nutritional Information (not including protein or dressing)

136 Calories * 4g Fat * 22g Carbs (4g fiber, 5g sugar) * 5g Protein

Peanut Sauce 


1 teaspoon sesame oil

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

2 Tablespoons Hoisin sauce

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon brown sugar (or agave)

2 Tablespoons lime juice (1 lime)

1 teaspoon chili sauce


Heat oil in small sauce pan over medium heat; add garlic and cook until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes). Add peanut butter, hoisin sauce, water, sugar, lime juice, and chili sauce. Allow the sauce to come to a simmer and allow it to thicken a little (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat and let cool.  

Nutritional Information (sauce only)

127 Calories * 9g Fat * 10g Carbs (1g fiber, 5g sugar) * 4g Protein 



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