I love duck and I love to keep it simple. To me, that’s what a picnic should be! I first made these one night when we were going to Symphony under the Stars in Sydney’s beautiful Hyde Park. There was something about sitting outdoors listening to classical music with a glass of pinot noir and chowing down on some of these beautiful Vietnamese rolls that just made the picnic memorable.




Skill level

Average: 4.1 (49 votes)


  • 100 g dried cellophane noodles
  • 1 whole Peking roast Duck (available from Chinese barbecue meat stores)
  • 1 handful coriander sprigs, coarsely chopped or torn
  • 1 handful mint leaves, coarsely chopped or torn
  • 40 g (¼ cup) chopped roasted peanuts (optional)
  • 2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
  • 18-24 sheets rice paper (22 cm round) or Peking duck pancakes (see Note)
  • 1 Lebanese cucumber, cut into 5 cm batons
  • 2 spring onions (scallions) , cut into 5 cm strips
  • spicy plum sauce, to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Place the noodles in a heatproof bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Stand for 3-4 minutes or until softened, then drain and rinse until cold running water. Using kitchen scissors, cut the noodles into thirds or just long enough to make them easier to handle.

Strip the meat and skin from the duck. Coarsely shred the meat and cut the skin into small pieces. This is best done while the duck is warm.

Place the duck meat, skin, herbs, nuts, noodles and Hoisin sauce in a bowl and toss to combine well.

Working one at a time, soak the rice-paper wrappers in a shallow bowl of lukewarm water until soft and pliable. Remove, drain well and lay on a plate. Place the ¼ cup of the filling on the bottom centre of each softened wrapper. Add a strip each of cucumber and spring onion. Fold the end up and over the filling, then fold in the sides and roll up firmly.

Serve with spicy plum sauce for dipping.



• The filling can be made 24 hours ahead and refrigerated. It can also be easily packed into the picnic basket along with the cucumber and spring onion, and if using store-bought pancakes, your friends can ‘roll their own’ on location! The assembled rolls are best left at room temperature, so assemble as close to serving as possible. 

• Peking duck pancakes are available from most good Asian supermarkets, Asian food stores and Chinese barbecue meat shops.


Photography, styling and food preparation by china squirrel. Recipe courtesy of Faraja, Adelaide.