Introduction: Vietnamese Egg Rolls

My friend is an unbelievable cook who is known for always making extra and sharing with others.  Since everything she makes is so incredible, she is often asked for her recipes.  She is one of those people that do not usually follow exact recipes, as she is naturally able to create things off the top of her head.  This Instructable was created so she could share her secret for one of her amazing dishes.

This recipe will show you how you can make your own delicious, authentic, homemade Vietnamese Egg Rolls.  You will be amazed at how tasty they are, and everyone will want to know your secret!  You may never settle for take-out again.

Disclaimer:  This recipe uses hot cooking oil that contains peanuts.  Closely supervise at all times to maintain proper temperature and level of oil in pot.  Use extreme care to prevent splashing of oil, or tipping of pot.  Keep children and pets at a safe distance.  Always adhere to following safe practices when handling any food or surfaces that come in contact with food.  See FDA site:    Author of this Instructable is not responsible for accidents/injuries incurred during creation of this recipe.

Step 1: List of Materials/Ingredients

For this recipe, you will need the following:

• 2 pkg. of Spring Roll Shells (25/pkg.) –available from any Asian Store (see close-up picture)
• 1 pkg. vermicelli noodles -available from any Asian Store (see close-up picture)
• 2 lbs. ground pork
• 8 cups shredded cabbage
• 3 cups shredded carrots
• 2 cups minced onion
• 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
• 3 eggs
• 1 egg yolk
• 1 1/2  teaspoons salt
• 1/2  teaspoon black pepper
• Cutting board or large plate to roll shells
• Any type of tongs or chopsticks
• Shredder/mincer
• Large bowl
• 3 qt. pot or deep fryer
• Peanut oil- enough to fill 1/3  depth of pot or deep fryer.  Can also use corn or vegetable oil.
• Table spoon  
• Plate lined with papertowels
• Scissors or knife to cut noodles
• Strainer
• Kettle or pot to boil water for noodles

*This recipe will yield 50 egg rolls.  Adjust the ingredients accordingly for less, but be will wish you made more! 

*You can prepare this recipe ahead of time and freeze the egg rolls for up to 1 month prior to cooking.  Do not thaw first.  Add directly to hot oil.

Step 2: Prepare Vermicelli Noodles

Place the entire package of vermicelli noodles in a small bowl and cover with boiling water.  Let soak in the bowl of hot water for a couple of minutes.  Then drain the noodles in a strainer over the sink.  Cut up the drained noodles into approximately 1 inch pieces.  You can use scissors while still in the strainer, or you can cut them up on a cutting board with a knife.

You will be adding these noodles to the bowl of shredded cabbage in the next step.

Step 3: Add Ingredients to Shredded Cabbage in Large Bowl

*Wash hands thoroughly before this next step, or consider using gloves.

Begin this next step by placing  the 8 cups of shredded cabbage in a large bowl.    Add the 3 cups of shredded carrots, 2 cups minced onions, salt, pepper, garlic, cooked noodles and 3 eggs to the cabbage.   Combine these ingredients all together using your hands.  Be sure to mix thoroughly.

Step 4: Add Pork to Mixture

Add the 2 lbs. of ground pork to the cabbage mixture and again, mix thoroughly with hands.  *This is similar to the hand mixing you do for meatloaf preparation.

Step 5: Fill and Roll the Shells

For this next step, you will need the mixture of ingredients from the large bowl, the spring rolls, large spoon, cutting board or large platter, and the single egg yolk in a small bowl.

For each individual spring roll shell (sheet), you will go through the same process.

Place one sheet from the package of spring roll shells onto cutting board or large platter.  It should be positioned diagonally right in front of you.  Scoop out one heaping spoonful of mixture from bowl for each roll.

Place spoonful of mixture near center of sheet, about a quarter of the way back from the corner closest to you.  Fold the corner over the mixture, tuck in center and roll forward slightly.  Fold right corner towards center of sheet, then fold the left corner into center.  Tuck and pinch both corners inward, while rolling towards remaining corner.  Leave just a small portion of the remaining corner of sheet exposed.  Dip finger into egg yolk and apply to the edge of this corner.  Finish rolling and seal with yolked end.  Stack rolls.

Once you have formed all your egg rolls, or at least have a stack made, you are ready to start cooking.

Once you get the timing down, you can continue to fill and roll remaining shells (if you haven’t already done so), while cooking 4-5 egg rolls at a time.

Step 6: Cook the Egg Rolls

You can use either a pot or deep fryer to cook the egg rolls.  Either device should only be filled with enough peanut oil to fill to 1/3 of capacity.  This will be just enough to cover the egg rolls while cooking.  A 3 qt. pot was used for this Instructable.

If using a pot, initially heat oil on high heat until it just starts to bubble. You will then turn the temperature down to medium heat.  You will know the oil is ready when you dip the end of a roll into the oil and see bubbles forming at the base.  Gently place 3 or 4 rolls into the hot oil, taking care not to splash any oil.   Be sure to keep the rolls separated in the pot initially to keep them from sticking to each other.  This will prevent them from being torn apart when you remove them later.

If using a deep fryer, set the temperature at 350 degrees F.  Again, only fill with oil to 1/3 of capacity.  Follow same instructions as for cooking in a pot.

After a couple of minutes, about halfway through the cooking process, carefully turn the rolls using tongs or chopsticks.  Total cooking time is approximately 5 minutes.

Step 7: Drain the Egg Rolls

The egg rolls are done cooking once they rise to the top of the pan and are golden in color.  Carefully remove them one by one using tongs or chopsticks.

Place them on a plate lined with a couple sheets of paper towels to drain the oil.

Step 8: Video of Steps 5-7

Step 9: Serve and Enjoy!

These egg rolls are scrumptious all by themselves, but you can serve with your favorite dipping sauce if desired.  Be advised though...they are addicting, and they will be quickly devoured!