Good intro to healthy Asian starter

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Sachie's Kitchen Summer Rolls. Photo / Supplied

By Wendyl Nissen

I bought these on a whim one evening when I had friends coming for dinner and thought this would be an easy and healthy entree.

The kit was great - everything you need except prawns, lettuce, a carrot and coriander, and the 20 rolls I made were delicious.

I have to admit that I thought Sachie was a made-up person for marketing purposes like Aunt Betty, but it turns out she does actually exist and gives cooking classes right here in New Zealand.

Sachie's Kitchen Summer Rolls. $8.99 for 292g.

Ingredients (greatest quantity first):

Rice paper [tapioca starch, rice, salt]

Tapioca is a root vegetable also known as cassava root. This is mixed with rice and salt and then rolled to make thin rice paper circles.

Vermicelli (34%) [arrowroot, tapioca starch, salt]

These are also known as rice noodles which are thin and transparent when cooked.

Arrowroot is a common food thickener and is a starch obtained from a variety of root vegetables, there is no specific arrowroot plant. In these noodles it is combined with tapioca and salt.

Summer Rolls Sauce (28%) [white vinegar [water, acidity regulator (acetic acid)], fish sauce [fish (73%), salt sugar], brown sugar, crushed garlic (acidity regulators (330,300), preservative (202)], frozen chopped chilli, modified starch (1422)]

These are all pretty basic ingredients for an Asian dipping sauce. The acidity regulators are citric acid (330) and ascorbic acid or vitamin C (300).

The preservative is potassium sorbate which is neutralised sorbic acid (202) and the modified starch is hydroxypropyl distarch phosphate (1422) which is a treated starch.

Continued below.

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Fried shallot

These look like fried spring onions and taste delicious.

My recommendations

If you're not a frequent maker of rice paper rolls and just want a one-off kit to make 20 of them, this is fine and the sauce tastes great.

But it is expensive.

I bought enough rice paper circles, vermicelli noodles and fried onions at my local supermarket to make 80 rolls for just $6.67 and I made a sauce from ingredients I had on hand like soya sauce, chilli sauce, garlic and fish sauce.

You do still have to add prawns, lettuce, carrot and coriander before you can make the rolls so I think paying $8.99 for this kit is a bit of an indulgence.

But busy people, like me, might appreciate it and for those who have never made them before this kit could be a good introduction (there is also an online video you can watch:

sachieskitchen.com/kits).

And these rolls are really healthy as they are low in fat and sugar, so if making 20 of them from this kit inspires you to make more, then well and good.

Highlights

• $8.99 to make 20 rolls is expensive.

• Low in fat and sugar.

• Gluten free.

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