Dan Bing with Cheese and Ham (Taiwanese Pancake with Egg) | 火腿蛋餅
Dan bing is a popular and fast breakfast item in Taiwan. It resembles a thin tortilla with eggs and your choice of filling wrapped up in one. There are two main kinds of dan bing, one’s made with a pancake like mixture and the other with dough. This recipe is the latter- it provides a chewier and crispy texture if fried till golden. I’m making this with part whole wheat flour, but you can make it with just all purpose flour.
Dan Bing (蛋餅, dan4bing3) literally means egg cake. It’s safe to say that we have dan bing at least 5 times a week for breakfast. In Taiwan dan bing comes in a few different shapes and with millions of toppings to choose from, anything they have at the breakfast shop you can have it added to your dan bing. Our favorite is corn and cheese, veggie and cheese and hash brown with cheese. Other favorites include bacon, ham, tuna, meat floss, and hot dogs. I’ve also seen some really interesting creations such as rice dumpling dan bing, radish cake dan bing, peanut butter sweet potato dan bing with cheese, kimchi, everything and even mala hot pot dan bing all exists somewhere if you look for them.
Today we’re making a much fancier version of dan bing than the Taiwanese street style version. Using left over bourbon glazed Christmas ham with shavings of artisanal cheddar cheese, spring onion and super tasty brown shell eggs from Prosper Valley Farm, topped with vegetarian mushroom oyster sauce. The vegetarian oyster sauce is a type of thick soy sauce, flavored with mushroom. Regular thick soy sauce can be used as well. Add some siracha or homemade MALA HOT SAUCE if you like it spicy!
For the wrap, it’s a mixture of all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, a bit of oil and boiling hot water. I like the dough version of dan bing more than the pancake mixture type. The ones that’s made with a dripping mixture is too soft for my taste, sometimes combines with filling it simply taste like a gooey mess. If you’re in a hurry just want to make something fast and happens to have flour tortilla in hand, you can replace the homemade dan bing skin with it, but I enjoy the homemade ones so much better and they’re actually really easy to make. You can make them ahead of time and just stack them up and freeze them, no need to defrost when making dan bing.
Mixing boiling hot water with flour is a technique often used in Chinese “wrap” making, called 燙麵(tang4mian4, meaning hot flour). Different amount of boiling water used produces different texture in a wrap, dan bing skin uses 100% boiling water; a soup dumpling wrap is about half and half. The reason for boiling hot water is that when it’s mixed with flour it traps more moisture in the wrap after it’s cooked… if that makes sense? Since dan bing skin doesn’t have much oil in it and is fairly dry, boiling hot water is used to make sure that the result stays moist and doesn’t dry out when cold.
Dan bing makes a super tasty breakfast or snack, it’s easy to take it to go as well. Keep it as a wrap without cutting it up and eat it in the car if you’re in a hurry! Don’t forget to pair it with some tasty drinks, Taiwanese enjoys dan bing with homemade soy milk for breakfast, a cup of black tea or try a VIETNAMESE YOGURT COFFEE to make a breakfast of champions.
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