Thai basil, which can be identified by its purple stem, has a stronger flavor and aroma with hints of licorice, cinnamon, and mint. Thai basil is readily available at Asian markets but if you don’t have an Asian market or cannot find Thai basil in your area, your best bet is to substitute with fresh mint. Thai basil is more similar to mint that sweet genovese basil which is used in Italian recipes.
Vermicelli rice noodle is a thinner noodle than angel hair pasta and is packaged as dry and brittle, requiring a short simmer in boiling water until softened (roughly 3-5 minutes. Once cooked, strain and run under cold water to stop the noodles from cooking. Drain from any excess moisture and use as a filling for spring rolls. This is readily available at Asian markets and in some national supermarket chains. At the store, looking for noodles with the word ‘bun’ on the packaging and/or check the ingredient list and confirm the noodles are made with rice flour and not bean starch (aka cellophane noodles).
Rice paper is a thin rice crepe that is dried and stacked, sold in packages. To use, it must be rehydrated and softened in warm or hot water to make it pliable enough for rolling and filling. Like the previous ingredient, you can find these at Asian markets and some national supermarket chains may even carry them.
8 sheets rice paper