Hey everyone, it’s Kevin here! Today I have a recipe for another common Chinese comfort food, scallion pancakes (congyoubing).
In Chinese cuisine, there are a lot of food made with dough. There are countless types of buns, dumplings, pancakes, and more. As a kid, my favorite food was definitely scallion pancakes. I remember being so excited whenever my mom would tell us that we’re having them for dinner. I loved them so much that I wouldn’t eat anything else just so I could fill myself up with scallion pancake.
What makes a great scallion pancake?
To me, there are two important features that separate the okay scallion pancakes from the great ones. The first is a flaky, crispy exterior. The second, and the most important, is a chewy center that is composed of many visible layers of dough. The layers allow the pancake to be relatively thick without being too doughy since they will trap some air. The combination of these two creates an experience that is unlike eating any other pancake.
If you’re missing either one of these components, it just won’t be the same. If there are no layers, then you’ll just have a crispy exterior, but the inside will be too doughy. Alternatively, you could roll it extremely thin and end up with a cracker. If the exterior isn’t crispy, then again, the pancake will taste too doughy, even if there are layers. The contrast of the crunchy exterior and the chewy interior is what makes scallion pancakes taste so good.
How do you get layers in a pancake?
Since layers are clearly so important in the making of a scallion pancake, we have to go over how to get as many layers as possible to create the perfect interior.
First, we roll the dough out as thinly as possible. This will allow us to get more layers when we roll it back up. Then, we spread a layer of oil over the rolled out dough. This will make it so that the dough doesn’t bind back onto itself when rolled back up.
There are many different ways I’ve seen of rolling a scallion pancake. The way I will describe is how my family has always done it and how I was taught to do it.
With the flattened dough, roll the long edges towards the center. This will create the majority of the layers in the final pancake, so you want to roll these as tightly as possible!
After that, slice the dough in half lengthwise since we’ll be making two pancakes. Stretch out one half of the dough as long as you can, since we’ll be rolling it up again! Now, roll the two ends of the dough towards the center again. When they meet, stack one roll on top of the other and push them together. This is your final pancake! Now you just roll it out and cook it. Watch the video below to see how this is done.
It may sound complicated, but it’s really not! The videos should make it clear how to roll it, but if you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment!
Now let’s get started!
What to eat this with?
You can dip it in soy sauce and eat it with a side of your favorite vegetable or meat dish. We love it with our Chinese Tomato and Egg recipe.
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