Banh Xeo are the most delicious Vietnamese savoury pancakes. They are fried until crispy then rolled up in salad leaves with mint and dunked in dipping sauce before popping into your mouth
Guaranteed to make you swoon. Our family thought they’d died and gone to heaven when I made them for dinner. Just silence and appreciative grunts coming from the dinner table.
The pancake is made with rice flour, or a combo of rice and wheat flour mixed together with coconut milk, spring onion, egg and turmeric. This is whisked to a smooth batter. I made them with prawns, mushrooms and beansprouts but the filling is fairly free lance. Whatever you fancy but don’t put too much in as the pancake will be unmanageable when you flip it.
The inclusion of regular flour makes them more manageable for non coeliacs but the recipe works well both ways
Here’s the recipe
200g rice flour or combo of rice and regular flour
half tsp turmeric
a handful of chopped spring onion greens
150mls coconut milk
about 100mls water
half tsp salt
Put the dry ingredients into a bowl, make a well in the middle then crack in the egg and add the coconut milk.
Whisk everything together and thin with water until you have medium pouring consistency – like melted chocolate. Stir in the spring onions.
Leave to stand for at least 10 minutes
For the filling
20 raw prawns – 2 for each pancake
250g bean sprouts
a little butter or oil to cook the mushrooms
Salad leaves – washed and spun
a big bunch of mint leaves
Heat a frying pan. Slice the mushrooms, drop a knob of butter or a glut of oil into the frying pan and add the mushrooms. Toss them well and cook on a high heat until they are cooked the way you like them. Season with a little salt and pepper and put aside.
To make the pancakes heat a small to medium size frying pan. Add a little oil and a couple of prawns, cook them for a couple of minutes – until they are pink- then add a few mushrooms. Drag the mushrooms and prawns to one side and pour in a small ladle of batter.
The pancake should be thin like a crepe. Cook on a medium high heat for a couple of minutes then add a small pile if bean sprouts to the pancake and flip in half. Increase the heat to high and cook each side until crispy. You might want to add a little more oil.
To serve the pancakes make a little dipping sauce
3tbs Lime juice
2tbs Fish sauce/Nam Pla
2 cloves garlic
1 dsp Sugar
Peel and chop the garlic and chop the chillies then mix together with all the other ingredients.
Put the pancakes onto plates and break or cut a piece off and wrap it in a salad leaf with a couple of pieces of mint tucked in. Dunk in the dipping sauce and pop it in your mouth.