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Chinese Bing Recipe: How to Make Delicious Chinese Pancakes

Bing is a type of Chinese flatbread that's popular as both a street food and a home-cooked dish. It's a versatile bread that can be enjoyed on its own or used as a base for other dishes, such as sandwiches or wraps. In this article, we'll introduce you to the basics of bing and provide you with a recipe that you can use to make your own at home.

A chef mixes flour, water, and salt to form dough. They roll it out and cook it on a griddle until golden brown

Bing has been a staple in Chinese cuisine for centuries, and its origins can be traced back to ancient China. Today, it's still a popular food throughout China, and it's also gaining popularity in other parts of the world. There are many different variations of bing, each with its own unique flavour and texture. Some are made with meat or seafood, while others are vegetarian. No matter what type of Bing you choose, you're sure to enjoy its delicious flavour and crispy texture.

If you're interested in making your own Bing at home, you'll be happy to know that it's a relatively simple process. You'll need just a few basic ingredients, including flour, water, and salt, as well as any additional ingredients you'd like to add for flavour. Once you've prepared the dough, you'll shape it into flat circles and cook it on a griddle until it's crispy and golden brown. From there, you can enjoy your Bing on its own or use it as a base for your favourite dishes.

Key Takeaways

  • Bing is a popular type of Chinese flatbread that can be enjoyed on its own or used as a base for other dishes.
  • Bing has been a staple in Chinese cuisine for centuries and has many different variations.
  • Making your own bing at home is a simple process that requires just a few basic ingredients.

Bing Basics

A bowl of mixed flour, water, and salt. A rolling pin flattens the dough. A pan sizzles with the bing cooking

Understanding Bing

Bing is a type of Chinese flatbread or pancake that is made from a simple dough of flour, water, salt, and oil. The dough is kneaded, rolled out, and then cooked on a hot griddle or in a frying pan. The result is a crispy, chewy, and delicious bread that can be served on its own or used as a wrapper for various fillings.

This versatile food that can be enjoyed at any time of day. It can be eaten as a snack, as part of a meal, or even as a dessert. There are many different types of bing, each with its own unique flavour and texture.

Types of Bing

There are several types of Bing that are popular in China, including scallion pancake, xian bing, jian bing, cong you bing, and qiāng bǐng. Scallion pancake is a savoury pancake that is filled with chopped scallions and sesame oil. Xian bing is a meat-filled pancake that is often served as a street food. Jian bing is a crepe-like pancake that is filled with egg, vegetables, and meat. Cong you bing is a flaky pancake that is made with scallions and oil. Qiāng bǐng is a type of flatbread that is similar to naan.

When making bing, it is important to use the right type of flour. All-purpose flour is the most commonly used flour for making bing, but some recipes call for bread flour or cake flour. The dough should be kneaded until it is smooth and elastic, and then allowed to rest for at least 30 minutes before rolling out.

To cook bing, heat a frying pan or griddle over medium-high heat. Brush the pan with oil and then add the rolled-out dough. Cook the bing for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until it is golden brown and crispy.

Seafood can also be used in bing recipes, such as shrimp or squid. These can be added to the filling of xian bing for a delicious seafood twist.

Preparing the Dough

A pair of hands mixing flour and water in a large bowl, forming a smooth dough for Chinese bing recipe

To make Chinese bing, the dough is the foundation of the recipe. It is crucial to choose the right flour, knead the dough properly, and let it rest before cooking.

Choosing the Right Flour

The most commonly used flour for Chinese bing is all-purpose flour. It is readily available and produces a good result. However, you can also use bread flour or cake flour depending on your preference.

Dough Kneading Techniques

To knead the dough, you can use a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment or do it by hand. If you choose to do it by hand, you will need to mix the flour, yeast, salt, and sugar in a bowl, then gradually add hot water, oil, and sesame oil while kneading. Knead the dough for at least 10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.

Resting the Dough

After kneading, the dough needs to rest for at least 30 minutes to an hour. You can cover it with a damp cloth and let it rest at room temperature. Resting the dough allows the gluten to relax and the yeast to activate, resulting in a more tender and flavorful Bing.

If you want to add a seafood twist to your Bing recipe, you can use shrimp or crab meat as a filling. Simply mix the seafood with some chopped scallions, salt, and pepper, and use it as a filling for your Bing. This will give a unique flavour that is sure to impress your guests.

Crafting the Bing

A pair of hands kneading dough, rolling it into thin circles, and filling them with savory meat and vegetables to create Chinese bing

If you're looking for a delicious and versatile dish, Chinese Bing is definitely worth trying. Bing is a type of Chinese flatbread that can be filled with a range of ingredients, from savoury meats and vegetables to sweet fillings like red bean paste. Here's how you can craft your own Bing at home.

Rolling and Shaping

To start, you'll need to make the dough. Combine all-purpose flour, wholemeal flour (or flour made of other grains) and water into a thin batter. Knead the dough until it's smooth and elastic. Use a rolling pin to flatten the dough into a thin, circular shape. The thickness of the Bing can vary depending on personal preference, but generally, it should be around 3mm thick.

Adding Fillings and Flavours

Once you've rolled out the dough, it's time to add the fillings and flavours. You can be creative here and use a variety of ingredients. Some popular options include scallions, sesame seeds, pork, beef, cheese, egg, onion, and spices like five spice powder and white pepper. You can also experiment with seafood options like shrimp or crab meat.

To add the fillings, place them on one half of the flattened dough, leaving some space around the edges. Then, fold the other half of the dough over the filling and press the edges together to seal it shut. You can also brush the edges with water to help them stick together.

Cooking Methods

There are a few different ways to cook bing, but pan-frying is a popular method. Heat a skillet or cast iron pan over medium heat and add a small amount of oil. Once the pan is hot, add the Bing and cook until golden brown and crispy on both sides. You can also use a non-stick pan for this method.

Another option is to bake the bing in the oven. Preheat the oven to 200°C and place the Bing on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the bing is golden brown and flaky.

Chinese bing is a delicious and versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many different ways. With a little creativity, you can experiment with a range of fillings and flavours to find your perfect Bing recipe.

Serving and Enjoying Bing

A table set with a steaming plate of Chinese bing, surrounded by chopsticks, a teapot, and cups. Steam rises from the bing, inviting enjoyment

Bing is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in various ways. Here are some tips on how to serve and enjoy bing.

Accompaniments

Bing can be enjoyed on its own or with accompaniments. Scallion pancakes, also known as green onion pancakes, are a popular accompaniment to bing. They are made with a similar dough to bing and are flavoured with scallions. They are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, making them a perfect pairing with bing.

Bing can also be enjoyed with soup, noodles, rice, or steamed buns. Soy sauce, especially light soy sauce, is a common condiment to serve with bing. It adds a savoury flavour that complements the dish well. Wedges of lime can also be served with bing to add a tangy flavour.

Presentation Tips

Bing can be served as a snack or as a meal. If serving as a snack, cut the bing into smaller pieces and serve with dipping sauce. If serving as a meal, bing can be served with accompaniments such as soup, noodles, or rice.

To add some variety to your bing, you can propose the use of seafood in the recipe. Seafood such as prawns or squid can be added to the dough or used as a topping. This adds a unique flavour and texture to the dish.

Bing is a popular breakfast dish in China. It is a savoury dish that can be enjoyed any time of the day. Whether you are looking for a quick snack or a meal, bing is a delicious and versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many ways.

Storing and Reheating

A hand reaches into a refrigerator, placing a stack of Chinese bing (pancakes) into a plastic container. The container is then placed into a microwave for reheating

Once you've made your Chinese bing, you may have leftovers that you want to store for later. Here are some tips on how to store and reheat your bing:

Storage

  • Store your cooked bing at room temperature for 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  • If you want to store your bing for longer, you can freeze them for up to a month. Wrap them individually in cling film or place them in an airtight container before freezing.
  • If you're using seafood in your bing recipe, make sure it's fresh and cooked properly before storing it. Seafood can be more perishable than other ingredients, so it's important to take extra care when storing it.

Reheating

  • To reheat your bing, simply pan-fry until crisp on both sides. You can also reheat it in an oven toaster.
  • If you're reheating frozen bing, defrost them in the fridge overnight before reheating.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to a month.

It's important to note that reheating your bing may affect its texture and taste. However, if you follow these tips, you can still enjoy your bing even after it's been stored and reheated.

When it comes to nutritional information, the exact values will depend on the ingredients you use in your recipe. However, bing can be a good source of carbohydrates and protein. If you're looking to make your bing healthier, you can try using whole wheat flour or adding more vegetables to your filling.

Frequently Asked Questions

A chef expertly folds and grills a thin, crispy Chinese bing, surrounded by various ingredients and utensils

What's the best way to make traditional Chinese bing at home?

Making traditional Chinese bing at home requires some practice, but it's a rewarding experience. The key is to use the right ingredients and follow the recipe closely. Start with a basic recipe that includes flour, water, salt, and oil. Mix the dough and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. Roll out the dough into thin circles, brush with oil, and sprinkle with chopped scallions. Fold the dough in half and press the edges to seal. Pan fry the bing until golden brown. Serve hot with your favourite dipping sauce.

How can I quickly whip up an easy Chinese bing recipe?

If you're short on time, you can use pre-made pancake mix to make Chinese bing. Simply add water to the mix and stir until smooth. Add chopped scallions and sesame seeds to the batter. Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat and pour a ladle of batter into the pan. Cook until the edges are crispy and the centre is cooked through. Flip and cook the other side until golden brown. Serve hot.

Could you suggest some variations of Chinese bing bread?

There are many variations of Chinese bing bread. You can add different ingredients to the dough, such as minced meat, seafood, or vegetables. You can also change the shape and size of the bing. For example, you can make small bing to serve as appetizers or large bing to use as a wrap. Seafood lovers can add chopped shrimp or crab meat to the dough for an extra flavourful bing.

What are the main differences between Shou Zhua Bing and Cong You Bing?

Shou Zhua Bing and Cong You Bing are both types of Chinese bing bread, but they have some differences. Shou Zhua Bing is a Northern Chinese street food that is made by pressing the dough onto a hot griddle with your hand. The bing is then topped with sesame seeds and served with a spicy dipping sauce. Cong You Bing, on the other hand, is made by rolling out the dough and adding scallions before pan-frying. It is a popular breakfast food in China.

In terms of health, should I be concerned when indulging in Jian Bing?

Jian Bing is a relatively healthy Chinese street food that is made with eggs, flour, scallions, and bean paste. It is a good source of protein and fibre. However, it is also high in sodium and calories, so it should be consumed in moderation. If you're concerned about your health, you can make a healthier version of Jian Bing at home by using whole wheat flour and adding more vegetables.

What exactly falls under the category of 'bing' in Chinese cuisine?

'Bing' is a broad term that refers to a variety of Chinese bread and pastry products. It includes everything from flatbreads like Cong You Bing and Shou Zhua Bing to sweet pastries like Mooncakes and Pineapple Buns. Some bing are made with wheat flour, while others are made with rice flour or other grains. Bing can be sweet or savoury, and they can be served as a snack, a meal, or a dessert.