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Charles Phan’s Vietnamese Fish Rolls and Dipping Sauce

Makes 6 - 8 rolls

10 ounces white fish
1/2 cup fish sauce
2 tablespoons turmeric
1 cup olive oil
1 cup dill (fresh)
1/2 cup white onion
1 Package Spring Roll Wrappers
1 head watercress
1 package white rice noodles, cooked and cooled.
Large pot of warm water
Vietnamese Simple Dipping Sauce (recipe follows)

Cut fish into small pieces in medium sized bowl. Add fish sauce making sure that the fish sauce is light in color. Sprinkle fish with turmeric and olive oil. Toss to coat.

Add olive oil to a medium sized skillet, covering bottom and turn on high. When skillet is hot add fish pieces. You want the fish to cook fast without burning and drying it out. Add fresh dill and onion to skillet. Heat up dill and onion for about 30 seconds before removing mixture from skillet. Set aside.

Next make sure that large pot of water is very warm but that you can still stick your fingers in it. Remove single wrapper from package and dip about 3 inches of wrapper into the warm water. Make sure not to dip the whole wrapper at once to prevent collapsing. After about 3 dips approximately 20 seconds in water, move wrapper around so that you are holding the just dipped piece. Holding on to this end, dip entire wrapper into warm water approximately two times. Pull out of water and let excess water drip off. Move wrapper on to a flat surface and smooth out edges.

Cut watercress pieces to about 5 inches long. This will be the length of the spring roll. Lay watercress about three inches away from edge of wrapper closest to you. Next place about one half cup white rice noodles on top of watercress. Top with fish dill mixture. Make sure not to overload on toppings. Overloading on topping will turn the fish roll into a Burrito.

Fold edges of wrapper inwards to form parallel lines. Begin rolling roll tightly with all your fingers away from you. Serve with simple Vietnamese dipping sauce. (Recipe follows)

Simple Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

1/2 cup Fish Sauce- (use high quality, iced tea color)
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons vinegar
1/3 cup lime juice
1 to 2 chilies

In medium bowl; mash chilies with about a tablespoon of sugar. Make sure that there are not big pieces left. Add fish sauce starting small and working up depending on taste. Then add limejuice, sugar and vinegar. Dilute with water to taste.


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