Gỏi cuốn( salad roll, summer roll, fresh spring roll, or rice paper roll, is a Vietnamese dish traditionally consisting of pork, prawn, vegetables, bún (rice vermicelli), and other ingredients wrapped in Vietnamese bánh tráng (commonly known as rice paper or cold rollUnlike other spring roll dishes which are believed to be originated from China, Vietnamese gỏi cuốn is the country’s creation using rice paper.
Gỏi cuốn are served fresh while others are served fried, like the Vietnamese chả giò. They are served at room temperature (or cooled) and are not deep-fried or cooked on the outside. These rolls are considered to be a very popular appetizer with customers in Vietnamese restaurants.
In southern Vietnam, these rolls are called gỏi cuốn, meaning salad rolls, while in northern Vietnam, these rolls are called nem cuốn, meaning nem rolls. In central Vietnam, they are simply called “rice paper” rolls. In the West, these rolls are called by several different English names, including “salad roll”, “spring roll” and “summer roll.” Sometimes the word “Vietnamese” is added at the beginning of these words; for example, in Hong Kong, they are called “Vietnamese rolls”, and in Australia and the United States they may be called “Vietnamese spring rolls” (although specifically in Australia they may sometimes be referred to as “cold rolls”). Some Asian restaurants in the United States also refer to them as “crystal rolls”, “soft rolls” or “salad rolls”. The name “summer roll” was popularized by some Vietnamese American restaurants for easier marketing and as a seasonal play on the term “spring roll”. But many Vietnamese American restaurants still use “spring roll” as the English translation.