Whenever we order from our local Chinese restaurant, my son always gets the scallion pancakes: they are his absolute favorite. I thought it would be great to make them inexpensively at home (and I figured we could do without some of the grease that comes along with the takeout kind), so here is what we came up with.
These scallion pancakes are lighter and lower-cal than the restaurant version but they have the green-onion-and-sesame taste of spring!
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoons salt
1 cup boiling water (more if needed)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
3/4 cup scallions, white and green parts, minced
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, place the flour and salt. With the motor running, add the water slowly through the feed tube until a ball of dough forms (you may need to add a little more water).
2. Remove the dough from the food processor, cover it with a damp cloth, and let it rest for 30 minutes.
3. Divide the dough in 2 equal pieces, leaving the other covered as you work with the first. Roll out the first piece of dough on a floured work surface into a 1/4-inch thick circle. Brush surface with half of the sesame oil and press half the scallions and half the sesame seeds into the dough. Set aside, then repeat this process with the other ball of dough.
4. Heat half the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place one pancake in pan and cook about 3 minutes on each side, turning once, until both sides are golden brown. Repeat with other pancake.
5. Cut pancakes into wedges and serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce.
By Cait Johnson, author of Witch in the Kitchen (Inner Traditions, 2001).