Sunday, November 7, 2010
You know one of those things you see in nearly every restaurant you go to, every blog you read..but you just never quite get around to trying. That's how scallion pancakes were like for me. Something more exciting always caught my eye....and I'm only sorry for how long it took me to get acquainted with this flaky, fragrant pancake. I was watching some food show and the hosts had gone to a rural part of China to have the famous 'lao bing'...it reminded me of scallion pancakes and that technique of slowly stretching soft dough until it was paper thin...so sheer you could see the woodgrains of the table holding it..well..I couldn't resist.
Cong You Bing~ adapted from Almost Bourdain
250 g all-purpose flour
salt~ I like my salt, but feel free to season to taste
110 ml warm water
1 bunch spring onions, bruised and chopped
Scallion/ shallot oil or lard~ I used shallot oil but I imagine lard would be amazing for flavour and extra flakiness
1. Make a well in the flour, add warm water slowly and mix slowly until you get a soft dough
2. Cover in cling film and let it rest for about half an hour
3. Cut the dough in 2. Take one portion and roll it out. I did what I learnt from the show~lift the edges of the dough and gently stretch it out..this probably warrants a step-by-step pictorial guide or a video of some sort but I can't even bring myself to get up and put on a jumper. So yes, coax the dough gently until it is paper thin..I was well chuffed when I could see the marbling on my counter top through the dough.
4. Brush generously with oil/lard and sprinkle on the spring onions
5. Then starting from the edge closest to you, roll it up, sealing the 2 ends.
6. Now roll it up again into a snail, flatten slightly and roll it out
7. Heat up some oil in a pan, brush both sides of your pancake with lard/shallot oil
8. Pan fry till crispy...cut into fat wedges that make the most satisfying crunch..serve hot:)