Vietnamese Recipes & Cuisines (Salad)

Salad Rolls with Pumpkin and Tofu Recipe

(Bo Bia)

This is one of the best Vietnamese "do it yourself" dishes. You place all the ingredients on the table with the rice wrappers for everyone to assemble their own rolls. Salad rolls are popular snack food in Saigon and other towns of the south, where the bo bia (salad roll) carts come out in the warm weather. Pumpkin, squash, courgette or aubergine could be used in the filling, and cured Chinese sausage is often included instead of tofu.

Ingredients : Serves 4-5

30 ml



2 cloves

350 g


15 ml



1 bunch

115 g

100 ml


1/4 teaspoon

Groundnut (peanut) or sesame oil

Tofu, rinsed and patted dry

Shallots, halved and sliced

Garlic, finely chopped

Pumpkin flesh, cut into strips

Carrot, cut into strips

Soy sauce

Green Thai chilies, seeded and finely sliced

Small, crispy lettuce, torn into strips

Fresh basil, stalks removed

Roasted peanuts, chopped

Hoisin sauce

Dried rice wrappers


Nuoc cham (optional), to serve

Method :
  • Heat a heavy pan and smear with a little oil. Place the block of tofu in the pan and sear on both sides.

  • Transfer to a plate and cut into thin strips.

  • Heat 30 ml oil in the pan and stir in the shallots and garlic. Add the pumpkin and carrot, then pour in the soy sauce and 120 ml water.

  • Add a little salt to taste and cook gently until the vegetables have softened but still have a bite to them.

  • Meanwhile, arrange the tofu, chilies, lettuce, basil, roasted peanuts and hoisin sauce in separate dishes and put them on the table.

  • Fill a bowl with hot water and place it in the middle of the table, or fill a small bowl for each person, and place the stack of rice wrappers beside it.

  • Tip the cooked vegetable mixture into a dish and add to the bowls of ingredients on the table.

  • To eat, take a rice wrapper and dip it in the water for a few seconds t soften. Lay the wrapper flat on the table or on a plate and , just off centre, spread a few strips of lettuce, followed by the pumpkin mixture, some tofu, a sprinkling of chilies, a drizzle of hoisin sauce, some basil leaves and peanuts, layering the ingredients in a neat stack.

  • Pull the shorter edge of the wrapper (the side with filling on it) up over the stack, tuck in the sides and roll into a tight cylinder.

  • Dip the roll into nuoc cham, if you like.

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