Recipe: Vietnamese banh
This Vietnamese pancake is gluten- and dairy-free. The pork belly is optional — you can also use prawns, poached chicken or minced beef.
Gluten-free | Dairy-free | Serves two
20g non-wheaten cornflour
200g rice flour
1 ½ tsp ground turmeric
¼ tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp salt
350ml coconut milk
50ml unsweetened almond milk
1 green chilli, halved
¼ cup fish sauce
¼ cup fresh lime juice
1½ Tbsp water
1 Tbsp caster sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp finely diced coriander stems
1 large carrot, peeled
1 daikon radish, peeled
1 telegraph cucumber, seeds removed
4 spring onions
1 cup mung bean sprouts
1kg free-range pork belly (use 200g for this recipe)
Salt and pepper
Toasted sesame oil
2 tsp sesame seeds
½ cup coriander leaves
1 red chilli, finely sliced
1. For the batter, place flours, turmeric, pepper and salt in a bowl and whisk for a moment to mix the ingredients. In a separate bowl, mix egg, coconut milk and almond milk together, and pour at a slow, steady stream into the flour mix, whisking until all lumps are removed. You should have a reasonably thin crêpe mixture, like thick pouring cream; if too thick, add more almond milk. Cover the mix and allow it to rest for half an hour.
2. For the dipping sauce, remove seeds from the chilli and dice it finely. Mix the rest of the ingredients, except the coriander, together until the sugar dissolves. Then add the coriander and the chilli.
3. Using a serrated peeler, shred carrot, daikon and cucumber into long strips. Cut spring onions on the diagonal into 2cm pieces.
4. Spray a large non-stick frying pan with cooking spray, and place over a medium heat. Once the pan is hot enough, pour a maximum of ¾ cup of batter into the pan, lifting the pan and swirling the batter around until it coats the entire base of the pan. Using a spatula, flip the pancake once the bottom has gone golden brown, and cook until both sides are done.
5. Layer the pancakes on a plate, between pieces of baking paper, and cover them with a tea towel to keep warm.
6. To cook the pork belly, preheat oven to 220°C. With a sharp knife, score the pork skin in lines 1cm apart, cutting just a short way into the fat. Rub pork all over liberally with salt and pepper. Place the pork in the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Turn oven down to 180°C and continue to cook for 1 ½ hours or until the juices run clear. Rest for 20 minutes, then slice the pork into strips 2cm thick.
7. To serve, put a warm pancake on a dinner plate, place the warmed pork belly on one half of the pancake and add a generous amount of the prepared vegetables and bean sprouts. Pour 1 tablespoon of dipping sauce onto the vegetables, then close the pancake over. Pour another tablespoon of sauce over the top, along with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil and a sprinkling of sesame seeds. Garnish with the coriander leaves and chilli, and serve with lime wedges to squeeze over.
Fran Mazza is a half-Italian pastry chef with a flair for design. She is also a hard-working mother of three children and knows the time limitations most modern households must work under. Feed Me Feed Me offers more than 100 great recipes for people who enjoy tasty food that can be cooked easily, with readily available ingredients. Published 1 April 2020, Random House, RRP $50.
AS FEATURED IN ISSUE 50 OF OHbaby! MAGAZINE. CHECK OUT OTHER ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE BELOW