RECIPE: Lauren Burns’ Rice Paper Rolls

April 20, 2011
lauren burns

If you’re a Taekwondo fan, you’d already be familiar with Lauren Burns, and even more so with her kick-butt victory at the Sydney 2000 Olympics, where she picked up the first ever Olympic gold for the sport.

What you may not know is that the talented Aussie is also a naturopath, nutritionist and herbalist, who has just released a vegetarian recipe book, Food from a Loving Home.

Besides Lauren’s 100 delicious recipes, there’s also a special section dedicated to home apothecary, which features “kitchen cupboard cures” as well as a recipe for Lauren’s very own moisturizer and lip balm. The mother-of-two, who has been vegetarian since three, kindly offered to share some recipes with

To find out more about Lauren and Food from a Loving Home, visit her website at

Lauren Burns Rice Paper Rolls

This is a wonderful fresh dish that is perfect for warm summer nights. The rolls can be assembled about an hour before serving but not much more than that – they are just so much nicer when fresh. I love serving the ingredients for the filling on a big plate along with a flat bowl of boiling water to soften the rice paper, and having the kettle handy to refill the bowl. Everyone digs in and makes their own fresh rolls. This cuts down preparation time considerably!

Rice Paper Rolls Recipe

Makes 16

100 g vermicelli noodles
16 round rice paper wrappers
1 carrot, cut into fine sticks
1 red capsicum, cut into fine sticks
1 x 350 g block fresh tofu, fried and
cut into thick strips
1/2 cups bean shoots
generous handful of Vietnamese
mint leaves
Satay Sauce, for dipping
sweet chilli sauce, for dipping
shoyu or tamari, for dipping

Place the vermicelli noodles in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit for 3/4 minutes, then drain.

Take a shallow dish that is large enough to hold a flat rice paper wrapper and fill it with boiling water. Let cool slightly, then submerge a rice paper wrapper in the water for about 5 seconds – this is enough to soften it. Remove carefully and lay on a plate or board. Place a little carrot, capsicum, tofu, bean shoots and mint down the middle of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over the filling, then fold in the ends and roll up (see photos opposite). Serve with satay sauce, sweet chilli sauce and shoyu or tamari for dipping.


Alternative filling ingredients: finely sliced lettuce, avocado chunks, fried tempeh slices. Instead of just Vietnamese mint, use a mixture of normal mint, coriander and Vietnamese mint.

Lauren Burns Bliss Balls Recipe

lauren burns

A delicious protein-packed snack, these are excellent when you’re craving something sweet or for packed lunches. They are also a good option for little people who don’t yet have the teeth to chew nuts well but can tolerate them in their diet.

Makes about 20

4 fresh dates, pitted
1 cup mixed nuts and seeds
(sunflower seeds, sesame seeds,
walnuts, almonds, cashews,
pumpkin seeds)
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 teaspoon pure cocoa powder
freshly squeezed juice of 1 orange
about 1 cup desiccated coconut

Put all the ingredients except the coconut in a food processor and blend to a smooth paste. Roll into small balls and coat in the coconut. Store in the fridge in an airtight container and eat within 5 days.

Note: Bliss balls can be stored in the freezer and taken out to snack onas needed. Thaw them first!

Include 1 teaspoon tahini. Use carob powder instead of cocoa.

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