Monday, 9 June 2014

Scallywag scallion pancake

Sorry it's been so long since a post. The bank holiday and the stream of hen do's seem to be taking its toll on me and for some reason I've not been strict enough on getting something tasty up on the blog. Naughty.  What's ironic is, I've been wanting to share this recipe for so long, and had done the photos for this - but wasn't inspired to write. The hunger for this dish was there, but the mind...alas, was not. I'm finally sitting down to this for the 3rd 4th attempt to share with you a recipe that is a simple and addictive appetiser/snack. CARBS CARBS CARBS. I'm not going to Marbella this summer, but I am soon heading off to Barcelona I feel the 'no carbs before marbs' rule,  shouldn't apply.
These spring onion pancakes are found in many breakfast shops and for dim sum. I prefer the breakfast route, and dunking this into a bowl of congee (rice porridge) is akin to a British man's eggs and soldiers. Little flecks of maldon salt and spring onions in layers of a simple dough is so easy to pop on the pan to heat up. Keep a stack of these in the freezer and toast up if you're in a rush for an Asian breakkie hit. Those who fear making bread needn't worry - this is a quick, beginners guide to kneading and proofing.

Spring onions (or scallions for the more 'international' reader) are synonymous with Chinese cooking - it makes up a lot of flavour foundations. Chopped fine enough, with a plain dough, it just gives this flatbread of sorts a ping of flavour - and the texture on top of this completes this feeling of satisfaction.

200grams plain flour
100ml boiling water
1tbs sesame oil
2 spring onions, cut into small rounds
Maldon sea salt

Place the flour in a bowl and slowly pour in the boiling water. With chopsticks, mix everything together until it just about comes together. Transfer this to a worktop and knead for about 8 minutes until it forms into a smooth ball. Place this back in a bowl, and cover with a slightly damp tea towel and rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.

Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Take one piece and roll out flat until the dough is about 1cm thick on a floured surface. With a pastry brush (or fingers if you don't have one), place a think layer of sesame oil over the top of the dough, as well as a sprinkling of spring onions and a pinch of salt. Roll the dough up like a a swiss roll, and then twist the roll into a spiral as per the pictures. Flatten gently and roll out to a disk shape (about 8 inches). Do this twice over for extra tasty layers.

Do this with the other 4 pieces. When you're ready, heat a tablespoon or oil in a non stick pan over a medium heat. When it is relatively hot, place the pancake into the pan. Shake the pan every now and then for about 3 minutes on each side. Once brown on both sides, set aside and season with salt and cut into wedges. Repeat with the other pieces and enjoy! Tastes great with black vinegar, or even sweet chilli sauce. I like to put one in the freezer and pop in the toaster when in need. 

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