Traditional crafts of Cambodia (4/7): Rice paper, Battambang

Rice paper is used for making the famous and delicious spring rolls. Due to the high demand of these thin leafs of edible paper, most of its production takes place in factories. In Battambang, a few families still make a living by producing them by hand.

The process starts by soaking rice in water for the night. The next morning the soft rice is ground and hung in a cloth to drain the water out. The ground and dried rice is mixed with salt water so that the rice paper can be conserved up to three months.

Then, this crepe-like dough is steamed and shaped as a disk. The rice paper solidifies by drying in the sun on a bamboo frame for two hours. The typical production of a family is about 1500 rice papers a day.

The best part of observing this manufacturing process is by far tasting super fresh spring rolls, fried and raw, on the spot!

Claire & Marcella

Travel tips:

  • To make the most of your visit, we strongly recommend you to take a local guide (see below) as most craft-people do not speak English and are actually working hard to make a living, so they should not be disturbed. The local guide knows the usage and will tip appropriately.
  • To live this experience and follow us on the trail of traditional crafts in Battambang, we highly recommend a tour with the knowledgeable Mr. Ola, who proudly takes you around in his tuk-tuk for a full day of discovering the real Cambodia behind the scenes! Message him on Facebook or e-mail him.
  • Check out this interactive map for the specific details to help you plan your trip and more articles and photos (zoom out) about the area!

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3 thoughts on “Traditional crafts of Cambodia (4/7): Rice paper, Battambang

  1. For us the most important part of the spring roll is the rice paper that wraps the ingredients! Too thick and it will be hard to chew. Too thin it might break up easily. A fine balancing act!

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