Recipe: Nova Scotia Rice Paper Rolls

Jenny Osburn | The Union Street Cafe Cookbook |

Jenny Osburn is the author of The Union Street Café Cookbook. Her second collaboration with Laura MacDonald of Deep Hollow Print, The Kitchen Party Cookbook, is now available! Find more recipes at and see what she’s up to on instagram at jenny.osburn

Nova Scotia Rice Paper Rolls

Makes about 20

These addictive snacks are one of my favourite things to take on a picnic. I especially love that something so exotic and fresh can be made from simple Nova Scotian ingredients. This time of year you can tuck in asparagus spears, fiddleheads (boil in salted water first), plus fresh mint and chives as they emerge from your garden. You can swap in some smoked tofu or smoked salmon for the shrimp or just make veggie rolls. Any way you roll ’em, you’ll love the refreshing crunch!

These should be made the same day that you plan to eat them and packed in an airtight container ’til picnic time. An array of dipping sauces in mini mason jars is a fun touch.

1 hothouse cucumber, cut into thin strips

1 medium carrot, grated

1 bunch green onions or chives, sliced thinly on the bias

½ small green cabbage, cut in long fine shreds (about 4 cups)

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup chopped fresh mint leaves, basil and/or cilantro sprigs

20 round rice paper wrappers

12 oz. (340g) cooked coldwater shrimp, defrosted

An assortment of dipping sauces: hoisin, plum, sweet Chili, nuoc cham (see below)

In a large bowl, combine the cucumber, carrot, green onion and shredded cabbage. Add the salt and fresh herbs, if you have them, and toss thoroughly.

Working with one rice paper wrapper at a time. Dip wrapper into a bowl of hot water for about 30 seconds, until softened.

Place the soaked wrapper on a clean work surface. On the bottom third of the wrapper, place about 6 shrimp. Top with a scant half cup of the cabbage mixture. Fold in the sides, then roll up the wrapper firmly. Repeat with the remaining wrappers. Serve with an assortment of sauces for dipping.

Nuoc Cham

Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon sambal oelek, sriracha, or other hot sauce
2 tablespoons fish sauce

Combine the lime juice, sugar, sambal oelek, and fish sauce in a small bowl and mix until the sugar dissolves. Taste and add a little more hot sauce if you like it spicy!