Eat Drink Style Chinese Beef & Scallion Pancake - 肉 卷 餅 or 牛肉 卷

Beef Scallion Pancake

On Sunday night, I invited my friends HL, Yoony of Immaeatchu and her beer-guzzling man over for for dinner. The irritating heatwave that had struck upon us a few weeks ago was finally, long gone. When it's cold, I immediately think of beef noodle soup because I am a noodle whore. Beef noodle soup calls for the usage of beef shank, the leg portion of the cow, and because it is tough and sinewy, it requires many hours of braising. Usually when I make this, I'm left with way too much beef. I had run out of soup and didn't know what to do with the remaining meat. Then, I remembered a delicious item I had eaten at Temple City's Mandarin Noodle Deli... scallion beef pancake. Such a good and easy snack to make.

Much like Koreans with their side dishes, known as 'baan chan', Chinese also have their own set of delicious snacks. We have something we call 'lu wei' (滷 味), which literally means 'simmered flavor' and requires hours of braising/simmering foods with spices such as anise, cinnamon and coriander. It's peasant food at its best. If you've been to a Taiwanese or Chinese market/deli, you might see a section of boxed foods with duck's feet, pig ears, tripe, intestines, etc.... that is 'lu wei' food. If you've ever had brown-colored boiled eggs, with that sweet, aromatic and somewhat salty taste... that's 'lu wei'. Good stuff! One of my favorite 'lu-wei' items is cold-sliced beef tossed with cilantro, chili oil and sichuan peppercorns... which is similar to what is used in beef scallion pancake.

Beef Shank Slices

I took my remaining beef shank from the beef noodle soup pot, wrapped it up and threw it in the fridge to let it harden. The next day, I sliced it into 1/8" cuts and poured a little bit of my beef noodle soup over it to revive it from dryness.

Scallions & Cilantro

Next, I chopped up some scallions and cilantro. One of the best kitchen gadgets I own is the scallion slicer/rake. For this dish, you don't want thick cuts of scallions otherwise it'll be overpowering.

Hoisin & Sesame Oil Sauce

For the beef scallion pancake, you need a sweet sauce. Not oyster sauce because it's too salty. Get hoisin sauce. I diluted it with a little water and added about 5-6 drops of sesame oil to brighten the sauce. Tasty.

For the scallion pancake, it's not hard to find it at the Chinese market. They either come fresh in the bread section or frozen. Fresh is best, but if you can't find it, no worries. Just don't use a tortilla or pita bread. Pan fry the scallion pancake for 3-4 minutes on each side until it's slightly brown. If you overfry the scallion pancakes, you'll see the mess you'll make when you try to roll it up. So the softer the pancake, the better it is.

Now, lay the scallion pancake flat, cover it with a generous amount of hoisin/sesame oil sauce, add the scallions and cilantro toward the bottom of the pancake in a tidy row (close to your body), add the beef slices.... and roll tightly away from you. Cut them at a diagonal bias and discard (or eat) the ends.

For the cold beef slices, you can just use the beef noodle soup recipe. Enjoy and thanks for reading.

Beef Scallion Pancake

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