In Vietnamese, banh xeo means “sizzling cake” for the sound the pancake batter makes when added to the hot pan. Inspired by the Vietnamese community in the Sydney suburb of Marrickville, this recipe packs a fresh and flavoursome punch.
- 300 g (1⅔ cups) rice flour
- 125 ml (½ cup) coconut cream
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 spring onion, thinly sliced, plus extra, to serve
- vegetable oil, to cook
- 1 cup coriander leaves, plus extra, to serve
- 1 cup shiso leaves (see Note), plus extra, to serve
- 1 cup Vietnamese mint leaves, plus extra, to serve
- 2 red bird’s-eye chillies, thinly sliced, plus extra, to serve
- 2 carrots, thinly shredded
- 160 g (2 cups) beans sprouts, trimmed
- 24 cooked prawns, cleaned, peeled with tails intact
- chilli jam (see Note) and iceberg lettuce leaves (optional), to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Resting time 1 hour
Combine rice flour, coconut cream, turmeric, spring onion and 1 teaspoon salt in a bowl with 500 ml (2 cups) water. Stir until a smooth batter forms. Cover and set aside to rest for 1 hour.
Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Brush with vegetable oil then add ½ cup batter, swirling pan to form a thin pancake. Cook for 3 minutes or until just cooked through, scatter one half of pancake with one-eighth of the herbs, chillies, carrot, bean sprouts and 3 prawns. Flip pancake in half to cover filling and cook for a further 30 seconds to warm through, then remove with a spatula and place on a serving plate. Repeat with remaining batter and filling ingredients. Serve with chilli jam, extra herbs, chilli, spring onion and lettuce, if desired.
• Shiso (perilla) is a purple-red Asian herb. Shiso and chilli jam are available from Asian food shops and select supermarkets.
Photography Tom Donald.
As seen in Feast magazine, July 2014, Issue 33.