Jian bing also known as Jian bing Guo Zi is one of the most popular Chinese breakfast options. It is a pancake rolled with deep-fried cracks, lettuces, and many other options. It is also served as street food in China. Here is how to make Jian Bing Guo Zi at home with a simplified process.
What's Chinese Jian Bing
Jian Bing is a pancake or Chinese crepe rolled with crisp fritter (named bao cui), or you can call it Jianbing Guozi(mandarin pronunciation), and is a local snack originating in Tianjin. rolled in it. It is often taken by people as their breakfast and was once granted the title of “one of China’s most beloved street breakfasts”. It is also my favorite breakfast. To take it with a cup of soy milk will make a perfect breakfast for me.
Jianbing Guo Zi at home
We seldom make jianbing guo zi at home in Chinese kitchens because it is unnecessary. But a simplified version can be achieved with very basic kitchen tools.
Cooking tools for Jian Biang Guo Zi
To make Jianbing Guozi, you need a griddle or crepe maker, spreader, and spetula. You need a round griddle to make the round pancake. And today I don’t have a griddle in my kitchen, so I use a non-stick pan instead, which also works well. The spreader is used to spread the batter in the griddle, which will help to form the round shape of the pancake. And the spatula is used for turning over the pancake. But we will use a non-stick pan to finish this recipe.
Types of flour to use in the Jian bing batter
The batter to cook into pancakes is wheat flour and corn flour. The traditional Jian Bing Guo Zi uses mung bean flour. When the pancake is cooked, it will be covered with a combined pre-made sauce and a crispy fritter will be put on the pancake. Then various fillings are added. Commonly the fillings contain lettuce, crisp cracks, sausage, cooked sesame, minced zha cai(pickled mustard tube) and sometimes there are other ingredients such as pork fillet, meat floss, shredded potato, shredded dried tofu, onion, shredded cucumber, coriander and so on. You can also add other ingredients as you like.
The combined sauce of Jianbing Guozi
The main flavor of Jianbing Guozi comes from the sauce, which is combined with several types of store-bought sauce. The sauce is a combination of the following pastes.
- Soybean paste (Huangdou Jiang) is one of them, a paste made from soybeans and wheat flour. It is naturally brewed and has a rich soy flavor.
- Another one is Doubanjiang, which is made from broad beans. Actually, it is an indispensable ingredient for most Sichuan cuisines, such as Mopo Tofu, Hui Guo Rou(twice-cooked pork often with chilli seasoning), Yu Xiang Rou Si, and so on. Doubanjian is spicy and salty and has a unique flavor. You can use laoganma chili sauce as a substitute.
- Tianmianjian is also needed to add to the sauce. It is made from soybeans and has a sweet flavor. And it could be used as the dipping sauce for Peking Roasted Duck.
- Oyster sauce is widely used in Chinese cuisine. It has an umami flavor and adds aroma to dishes.
- Peanut sauce can use to enhance the flavor.
After mixing all the ingredients together, we need to stir-fry the combined sauce in oil, which will enhance the fragrant flavor of the sauce.
What is crispy fritter - Bao Cui
The Chinese name of the crispy fritter or cracks is “薄脆(baocui)”, or you can also call it Guozi. The Chinese character “薄” means thinness, and “脆” means crispiness, which are the main features of a crispy fritter. It is made of wheat flour. To make the wheat flour into a dough, roll it into thin pieces and shape them into small rectangular shapes. You also have to cut two lines in the center of each piece, which will help to form a beautiful appearance after deep-frying. Then heat the oil with a small fire and deep-fry the rectangle-shaped pieces in the oil until both sides become golden.
Bao Cui, the crispy crack is a must-have ingredient of Jianbing Guozi. A shortcut way is to use a wonton wrapper to fry the crispy cracks. The wonton wrappers are also made from wheat flour and they are thin, which makes them the perfect ingredient to make a crispy fritter.
How to make Jian Bing at home
Fry the ham sausage with a small amount of oil in a non-stick pan. You can skip this.
Make bao cui
Cut two lines on wonton wrappers, partially not thoroughly. Deep-fry the wonton wrappers until both two sides turn golden.
Make Jian Bing crepes
Put the wheat flour and corn flour into a bowl, add water slowly, and stir the batter until smooth.
Soop around ⅓ cup of the batter and pour it into a non-stick pan.
Heat the pan into moderate heat with no oil, add ⅓ cup batter into the pan, and spread the batter. It’s best for you to cover the whole bottom of the pan with the batter.
Add an egg to the batter and use the spreader to stir and cover the egg on the pancake evenly.
Sprinkle the sesame and turn over the pancake after the egg is solidified.
Cover the whole pancake with the stir-fried sauce.
Sprinkle Zhacai on the pancake, put the lettuce, bao cui - the deep-fried wonton wrappers, and sausage on the pancake, and roll all the filings together. Often Jianbing Guozi is cut into halves so that it will be more convenient for you to eat.
Other Chinese breakfast
Other Chinese Pancakes
Jian Bing- Jian Bing Guo Zi
- 100 g all purpose flour , around ⅔ cup with dip method
- 60 g corn flour , around ⅓ cup with dip method
- 200 ml water , plus 10ml more for adjusting
- ¼ tsp. sesame oil
- 1 tbsp. Soybean paste
- 1 tbsp. Doubanjiang
- 1 tablespoon Sweet bean paste
- 1 tbsp. peanut butter
- 1 tsp. Oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 5 Ham sausages
- 1 head Lettuce , washed
- Zha Cai , chopped
- 1 tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
- 5 eggs
- 10 wonton wrappers
Fry the sauce
- Heat around 1 tablespoon of oil in pan, fry doubanjiang until aromatic. Then place all the other sauces, mix well with very slow fire. Set aside.
- Half the ham sausage and pan fry them with a small amount of oil in a non-stick pan. You can skip this.
- Cut two lines on wonton wrappers, partially not thoroughly. Deep-fry the wonton wrappers until both two sides turn golden.
Make the crepes
- Put the wheat flour and corn flour into a bowl, add water slowly, and stir the batter until smooth.
- Soop around ⅓ cup of the batter and pour it into a non-stick pan. I am using a 28cm diameter pan. You need to adjust the amount of batter used each time if you are using a different size.
- Heat the pan into moderate heat with no oil, add ⅓ cup batter into the pan and spread the batter. It’s best for you to cover the whole bottom of the pan with the batter.
- Add an egg and use the spreader to stir and cover the egg on the pancake evenly.
- Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and turn over the pancake after the egg is solidified.
Assemble Jian Bing
- Cover the whole pancake with the combined sauce.
- Sprinkle chopped Zhacai if using on the pancake, put the lettuce, bao cui - the deep-fried wonton wrappers, and sausage on the pancake, and roll all the filings together. Often Jianbing Guozi is cut into halves so that it will be more convenient for serving.