December 30, 2018

Cook time: 20 minutes
Prep time: 45 minutes
Serves 4

If you really want to impress, have a go at these sizzling pancakes (banh xeo). They’re fairly simple with just a few tricks to pulling them off – the batter needs to rest at least 30 minutes or (even better) overnight and the pan must be smoking hot. Traditionally they’re served with pork belly and prawns but I’ve simplified by using pork sausage.

1 cup rice flour
2 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp turmeric
3/4 cup coconut milk
½ cup water
½ cup beer

Soy Nuoc Cham
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 fresh red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1 tsp ginger, finely grated

Chilli Caramel Pork
500g pork sausages, skin removed and crumbled
3 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 fresh red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped


To assemble: 3 cups pea shoots
3 cups fragrant greens (mint, basils, coriander)


For the pancakes whisk together all ingredients and a good pinch of salt. Rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
For the nuoc cham, add all ingredients to a jar and shake until mixed and sugar is dissolved.

For the caramel pork, heat a splash of peanut or vegetable oil in a large pan over high heat.
Add the crumbled pork and cook for 3 minutes or so breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon.
Add the sugar and fish sauce. Stir, then leave it to cook without touching until all the juices cook out and the pork starts caramelised – about 2 minutes. Stir it and leave it again, without stirring, for around 30 seconds to get more caramelisation. Add chilli and repeat twice more until caramelised to your liking.

For the pancakes, heat 1 tbsp peanut or vegetable oil over medium-high heat add 2⁄3 cup of batter to the pan. Tilt and swirl the pan to coat the bottom with a thin layer. Cook until the bottom of the pancake is golden and crisp, about 4-5 minutes.
Slide the pancake onto a plate and top with ¼ of the greens and caramel pork then fold in half.

Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Serve with Nuoc Cham on the side.

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