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Author Notes: Scallion pancakes (called cong you bing in Mandarin but pronounced like "chung yo beeng") are pretty much readily available at every Chinese take-out restaurant and in the frozen food aisle at Asian supermarkets.
I grew up loving these crispy, pan fried treats in my house. This is adapted from my dad's recipe that I had all the time growing up. He taught it to my mom who used to make them in big batches and we would just take it out of the fridge and onto the pan whenever we wanted a pancake.
Try this modern update on a classic Chinese appetizer using an untraditional seasonal ingredient!
- 2 cups unbleached white flour
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 1 bunch ramps, washed thoroughly with ends taken off and chopped finely
- In a large bowl, create a crater in the flour and slowly add the hot water. It should start to come together. The hot water keeps the dough moist and soft. Knead the dough until it becomes elastic and starts to form into a ball.
- Finish kneading the dough on a wooden cutting board. The dough should have a little shine.
- Cover with a clean towel and put in a warm spot for the dough to rise for approximately 20 minutes. It will not rise significantly like yeasty dough does, but will definitely grow.
- Cut into 6 pieces. Roll out the piece of dough into a round shape; it should be roughly 1/8 inch thick.
- With a pastry brush, lightly coat the rolled out dough with olive oil. Scatter the ramps evenly on top of the dough. Add a pinch of salt over the dough. Repeat with the other 5 pieces of dough.
- Then, roll the dough back up and fold together on both ends and form into a ball again. Make sure no ramps are sticking out of the dough.
- In a large bowl, cover the dough with olive oil. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. You can cook it immediately as is if you do not have the time. Letting the dough rest adds an extra crisp to the finished pancakes. The dough in the oil can actually stay refrigerated up to a week.
- Roll out the dough on the wooden cutting board again until 1/8 inch thick.
- Over medium heat, cook each pancake 10 minutes on each side or until browned.
- Remove from heat and immediately sprinkle salt to taste on the pancake. It can also be served with a sauce made from soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil with a bit of sugar.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Spring Alliums