Crispy. Chewy. Flaky. Fragrant. Savory. I find them irresistibly yummy. Scallion or spring onion pancakes are standard Chinese fare. Unfortunately, like many other standard Chinese dim sum fare, they’re made of refined flour. I still indulge in a piece (or two!) when we dine out with family but most times, I stay away.
A few weekends ago, The Mom had a craving for some spring onion pancakes and shoved me a large bag of spring onions, accompanied by the sweetest of smiles. I grumbled and warned that since I only had spelt flour at home, the only version I could attempt was a spelt version. And I wasn’t sure how it would turn out.
All I can say is thank goodness The Mom had a craving. We made our first batch, and it was gone within minutes! Other than the muddy brown color of the spelt flour, it was delicious! And the spelt flour added a sweet, nutty flavor to the flatbread.
The entire process is quite easy. Here’s how:
Chop up a cup worth of fresh spring onions.
Mix 2 cups of spelt flour with 3/4 cup of boiling water, pouring the water in a little bit at a time until the dough comes together. Knead a few times to form a smooth ball. Transfer to a bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and allow dough to rest for 30 minutes.
Before you start rolling out the pancakes, set up your assembly line with 1 small bowl of sesame oil, one bowl of spring onions, and flour to dust your workspace. Since I don’t have a large area to work on in my kitchen, I simply use an overturned baking tray to flour and knead my dough.
Once you’re all set up, pinch out a portion of the dough, and roll out into a disc on a lightly floured surface. Using your fingers, brush sesame oil over the disc and sprinkle spring onions on top.
Roll it up.
And twist your roll into a spiral.
Flatten your spiral into a disc. You can repeat the above steps once or twice more, if you like as it helps to create the flaky layers in the final product. I’m lazy so I just did it once, and I found the texture to be great.
And now all you have to do is to heat up some sesame oil in a non stick pan and cook your pancakes until they are golden brown on each side. Transfer to a paper towel to drain, season with salt and serve with a dipping sauce of your choice.