Friday, March 20, 2009

Don't Call the Whole Thing Off

You say, "chong yu bing," I say, "negi-mochi"..... Perhaps you know them as Chinese green onion pancakes.

Call them what you will, they are delicious.

The Kid loves the negi-mochi served at one of our favorite Japanese/Chinese dumpling joint and he can probably eat the entire order himself, if we let him.

How hard can they be to make? On a whim, I decided to have a go at one of these flaky, chewy, amazingly delicious snacks after the children were safely in bed.

Once I started rolling out the dough and heating up some oil for frying, I spied a little shadow by the kitchen door.

The Kid sheepishly revealed that he heard a rumor that there was negi-mochi being made in the kitchen and that he was actually SOOOO hungry even though he finished two plates of food for dinner PLUS a huge fruit plate for dessert.

Lucky for him, since he asked so politely, he got to pull up his chair by the kitchen counter to watch me roll out the little pancakes and graciously volunteered to be my taste tester.

The first one, I made according to the recipe. Nothing like what we've had at restaurants -- not flaky enough and too healthy, not enough oil.

The second one, folded a few extra times for extra flakiness. Still not right.

The third one, folded twice and cooked in extra oil. The Kid gave me a half thumbs up.

Fourth one -- about the same. "Mama, they are getting better and better each time!"

After that, The Kid was sent to bed and I put the rest of the dough in the fridge.

Today, I fried some up for The Kid's lunch. The dough was so much more chewier, the flakiness was just right (two folds) and the extra oil made them crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

Yummmmm....


Negi-Mochi

Ingredients:

-2 cups flour
-1/2 cup boiling water
-1/3 cup cold water
-4 tablespoons sesame oil
-1/2 chopped green onions
-
1 teaspoon salt
-generous amount of oil for pan frying

Directions:
1. Mix flour and boiling water.
2. Add cold water and mix until flour is well incorporated.
3. Knead dough until smooth and elastic. Add more cold water as necessary.
4. Cover and let dough rest for at least 15 minutes.
5. Pour sesame oil in a small bowl and have a small pastry brush ready.
6. Divide dough into 10 pieces and roll each into a ball.
7. Using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a 6" circle and brush each circle with sesame oil.
8. Roll oiled circle like a jellyroll, then coil it into a snail shape.
9. Flatten the coiled "snail" with your hand first, then roll it into a 5" circle with the rolling pin.
10. Brush sesame oil on the circle again, sprinkle some salt and about 1 teaspoon of green onions.
11. Roll oiled circle like a jellyroll again and coil it into a snail shape.
12. Flatten the "snail" again and roll out into a 5" circle.
13. Carefully fry in hot oil at medium high heat for about 2 minutes each side.

You can fry them in as little oil as you like to make it healthy or a lot of oil to make it as authentic as possible. I suggest going all out with the oil, just don't eat too many of them....

IF
you can resist.

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