Spongy Spring Onion Pancake
I like having breads and buns for breakfast, but I am not good at bakery, since I don’t have a regular size oven at my kitchen. I think good bread need more room to steam and bake in the oven. Chinese buns, pancakes and dumplings are foods I have been practicing. Instead of a proper oven, pans or steamer would do perfect jobs!
I have made this spongy spring onion pancake quite often. Unlike the usual thin and crispy spring onion pancake, this one is thick and fluffy like bread or bun, but still keeps crunchy outside, and doesn’t need much oil in making and cooking. It takes 2 hours for the dough to rest in this recipe but it’s very easy to follow. I usually make it the night before and reheat in the morning for breakfast.
For the dough –
All purpose flour, 2 cups;
Warm water, 3/4 cup;
For the filling –
Spring onion, finely chopped, 1 cup;
Salt, 1/2 tsp;
All purpose flour, 1/2 cup;
Oil, 1/4 cup;
Some roasted sesame seeds for garnishing.
How to do –
1. Dissolve the yeast in warm water;
2. In a big mixing bowl, put in flour, salt, oil and the yeast water, mix immediately till flaky, then knead to dough. The dough at this stage won’t be smooth, don’t worry, time will do the job. Covered and let it rest for half an hour;
3. Knead again and the dough would be silky and soft at this stage. Spread a little oil on the dough and the board. Flatten the dough with a rolling pin. It’s hard to stretch the dough at this stage. Covered and let it rest again for half an hour;
4. Now let’s prepare the filling. I have a bit leftover chopped spring onion, about 1 cup. More is better but 1 cup is good enough. Mix them well with salt, flour and oil;
5. Flatten the dough into a thin sheet with the rolling pin and spread the spring onion mixture evenly on;
6. Roll the sheet into a long roll and coil it into a round cake. Then covered and rest for one hour;
7. Now the dough is ready to be cooked. But before that, I would like to sprinkle some black and white toasted sesame seeds on top. Pat the dough so that the sesame seeds stick on. Shape the dough gently;
8. Heat the pan. I like to use a big roomy non-stick wok with flat bottom so I don’t put any oil. Put in the dough gently and fry for a few seconds, then flip to other side, lid on, turn down to medium low heat. The dough is thick so it needs about five to ten minutes to cook for one side. Then flip to another side for another five to ten minutes;
9. Lid off and turn up the heat, fry double sides till the surface turns crunchy;
10. Cut it into big pieces and serve hot;
11. Keep in fridge if you can’t finish in one go. You could reheat it in oven or in a roomy pan. Make sure you do it with medium low heat. When you reheat it in a pan, sprinkle some water in would help the pancake remains fluffy and moist. Lid off and fry both sides to maintain crispy skin.
This is the portion for two to three. You could make bigger one if you have big pan, or smaller one if you don’t. The key of this recipe is to let the dough rest long enough and the spring onion mixture filling.