Over at the Almost Bourdain blog is a very simple recipe for Shanghai Scallions (葱油饼), a savoury dough like pancake. This is a bit like an up market Australian damper.
They are quite easy to make, and the ingredient list is stuff you likely have lying around the house. After I'd made them a few times, we were looking for something simple for lunch, and tried them as a base for salmon and a bit of dill. Not quite traditional, but very tasty!
To make this, you will need:
- 250 g all-purpose flour, with some extra for dusting
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 110 ml warm water
- 20 g spring onions, finely chopped from the green part of the onion
- 50 g vegetable oil
- smoked salmon
- cream cheese
- a drop or two of lemon juice
Making the pancakes takes a bit of preparation, for full details, refer to this article.
- To make the dough mix the sifted flour and salt, then slowly mix in the warm water. It took a few attempts at making these until I got the dough consistency to my liking, however they still taste great if the dough isn't quite right.
- Rest the dough under cling wrap for half an hour or so.
- Split the dough into two pieces and then roll out into a quite thin circle. The thinner you get it, the better the pancakes turn out.
- Brush the surface of the pancake with a generous amount of the vegetable oil, and sprinkle the spring onions around. This helps the layers form, so don't skimp on the oil.
- Roll the pancake and then pinch the ends together. Then flatten slightly and twist into a spiral. (Look at the pictures here).
- Flatten the spiral into a pancake. Either use your hands or the rolling pin.
- Cook the pancake in a fry pan on medium heat, with some oil, for 3-4 minutes on each side. If the pan is too hot, the outside will burn and the middle will be raw. Cut into wedges and serve.
- For the topping, mix together a generous amount of dill and the lemon with the cream cheese. Spread generously over the pancake wedges and top with the smoked salmon.
The pancakes are a great side dish, and with the salmon make a very tasty lunch.