Fried Vermicelli 厦门炒米
Tomato Martini

Chung Yao Beng - Chinese Flat Bread


Chung Yao Beng - Chinese Flat Bread
I did not expect to find bread in China, but I did.  European Bakeries are on every corner.  From my students I learned the Chinese have developed a love affair with bread.  It affords them a quick and easy way to eat breakfast on the go.  I fell in love with this traditional Chinese bread.  A hole in the wall by the farmer's market supported a family of bakers that churned out huge disks of this bread from sun up until it got too hot to move.  At 8:30am a line would form that stretched for blocks.  In China that is a sign of quality.  I scheduled my trips accordingly.

Mix the water and the flour until a sticky dough forms.  Flour a clean flat work area and knead the dough for a few minutes then place in a bowl and cover. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.  Flour your work area and rolling pin well. Divide the dough into 4 to 5 equal pieces. Take one of the pieces and roll it into a pancake about 1/8 inch thick.  Smooth oil on the dough and sprinkle generously with salt, sesame seeds and green onion.  Roll up the dough so that you have a long tube, then roll up the tube.  Squeeze the side together push it down flat so that you can roll it out into another dish.

Spread oil on a plate and put the flattened dough onto the plate. Bush the top of the bread with oil and cover with parchment. Oil the top of the wrap and put the next pancake on top and continue until you finish all the pieces.

Heat 1 tbsp of oil over medium-high heat in a skillet or flat pan. Fry the dough on one side until browned Flip and continue on the other side until done.  Removeit to a cutting board and sprinkle with more salt and sesame to your liking. Briefly roll up breads to separate layers. Lie flat again and cut into pieces and serve hot.


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Photo Credit:  Julie Cecchini


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