16 (6-inch) rounds rice paper
8 leaves lettuce, washed, dried and torn or chopped
2 cups cooked rice vermicelli, rinsed and drained
1 cup shredded peeled carrots
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup fresh Thai basil leaves
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
32 poached shrimp, split lengthwise in half
1/2 cup Asian fish sauce
2-3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon Vietnamese chili-garlic paste
Salt and black pepper to taste
Dip a sheet of rice paper a third of the way into a bowl of hot water for about 2 seconds. Turn it and dip remaining section, then lay on a damp towel. Working on bottom third of rice paper, spread a bit of lettuce, noodles, carrots, herbs and pork and/or shrimp. Fold up bottom edge to cover, then fold in the sides. Roll tightly. Make more rolls, using remaining ingredients.
Combine fish sauce, sugar, honey, ginger, chili-garlic paste and about 1/3 cup water. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding salt and pepper if necessary. Serve rolls right away, or refrigerate, lightly covered, up to 2 hours. Cut each roll into 2 or 3 pieces, then serve with dipping sauce and lime wedges. Makes 16 rolls.
Variation: For a Summer Roll Salad, omit rice paper. Use about 6 cups torn lettuce leaves, 3 cups noodles, and 1 1/2 cups carrots; other ingredients can remain the same. Divide lettuce among 4 plates, then top each with a quarter of the noodles, carrots, herbs and pork or shrimp. Drizzle dipping sauce over all, and serve with lime wedges. Serves 4.