Recipe: Ca Nuong or Grilled Fish Roll


Ingredients + Condiments

  • 1.5 pounds fish filet (orange roughy or any white fish)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and black pepper mixed together
  • sprinkle of garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 head of lettuce
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 bunch of  various mints 
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 plantain banana
  • 1/2 green mango or sour apple
  • 1 small cucumber
  • 1/2 cup julienned carrots 
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
  • 6 ounces of thin white vermicelli rice nooodle
  • 2 teaspoons of red wine vinegar mixed with 2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1/2 cup ground, unsalted roasted peanuts
  • rice paper 15″ diameter
  • dipping sauce (nuoc cham)–see instructions separately below

At the end of this blog I am posting some photos as shopping and visual aids.

This recipe yields about 10 rolls



  • Place fish filets in a mixing bowl or deep dish. Marinate both sides of the fish well with salt, black pepper, olive oil, and garlic powder.  Cover and let fish marinate for about an hour in the fridge.  Place fish on a baking rack on top of the baking plate then bake it uncovered in 350F for about 20 minutes. Do check after 15 minutes as some fish will cook faster depending on the thickness of the filets. If you cover the fish with aluminum foil while baking, the fish may become too moist and crumble.
  • While waiting for the fish, boil the rice vermicelli per instructions on package. It should taste more well done than al dente but not too soft. Be sure to drain it well in cold running water before plating it. Then set it aside.
  • Clean and drain the lettuce, mint, bean sprouts, and cilantro and only keep the leaves and young stalks. Cut the lettuce leaf lengthwise in half and remove the stalk for easing wrapping later.  
  • Slice the plantain banana, cucumber, and green mango/sour apple into long, thin pieces.
  • Grind the peanuts in a food processor till they are small chunks.
  • Thinly slice the shallots then quickly stir fry over medium high heat in olive oil until they brown and become somewhat crispy (this can be substituted with the already dried onions/shallots found at Asian markets). Slice the green onions and do same. In my picture above we forgot to grill the green onions and they should NOT be served raw like that.
  • Remove the fish from the oven then drizzle the shallots, green onions and peanuts over it.
  • Wet the rice paper  and when it is soft enough for wrapping, layer it with the condiments, noodle, then fish and roll. See photos below for rolling sequence.
  • Serve nuoc cham (fish sauce based dipping sauce–see video below) in individual bowls and add julienned carrots to each bowl. Dip the roll in the sauce and enjoy!




This is a reminder of how to make nuoc cham:



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