By Samantha Smith
Living with a Chinese American roommate, the foods in our household tend to lean dramatically one way or another (culturally speaking). Xinmin’s dishes tend to have a South-Eastern Chinese taste, while mine tend to utilize American foods that emphasize my Black/African American heritage. However, when we cook together, we always bring something different to the table. I feel so fortunate to have been paired with a roommate that has a culture so different from my own. It’s allowed me to experience an array of amazing foods, some of which I would have never ventured to learn about before.
I tried Cōng Yóu Bǐng, also known as Scallion Pancakes, for the first time when Xinmin decided to make it with the leftover flour and green onions we used to make dumplings. As soon as I tasted the flakiness of the bread, I fell in love. It was unlike anything I had ever tasted before. Even Negiyaki, a green onion Japanese pancake that I have tried and adore, does not have the same taste or textures as my new favorite Chinese treat.
Some time ago I decided to make turkey burgers for our “roomie dinner”, but I couldn’t think of a complimentary dish to go with the burgers. That’s when it clicked. The night before, Xinimn had made Cōng Yóu Bǐng and happened to have some leftovers. Instead of using plain old hamburger buns, we decided to put the turkey burgers on the leftover Cōng Yóu Bǐng; the results were delicious!
If you want to try this combination out for yourself, try out the recipe below!
Ingredients (makes 2 servings):
For Turkey Burger
10 oz.Turkey Ground Meat
1 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp Pepper
2 slices of Cheddar Cheese
For Cōng Yóu Bǐng
1 cup Fluor
½ cup Water
½ cup Chopped Green Onion
1 Tbsp Sesame Oil
Oil (for frying)
First, let’s make the Cōng Yóu Bǐng. In a medium size mixing bowl, mix the water and flour until it forms a dough-like consistency. Next, roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface into the shape of a circle. Spread green onions and ¾ of the sesame oil onto the dough. Fold the dough in half so that the green onions and sesame oil are enclosed. Roll out the dough into a circle again and repeat the previous process three more times. When complete, split the dough into two balls and and roll each of them into a circle. Finally, cook each of the dough pieces in a heated/oiled cooking pan; fry the dough until each piece is golden brown. Lay each slice on a separate plate and cut in half.
Now let’s make the turkey burgers. Place 10 oz of turkey ground into a mixing bowl. Add in the salt and pepper. Mix well. Then separate into two balls and flatten them into patties. Cook both of the patties evenly in a heated/oiled cooking pan, until lightly browned on both sides. Top each burger with a slice of cheddar cheese.
Finally, make a sandwich with the turkey burger and Cōng Yóu Bǐng. Top with mayo, ketchup, or whatever pleases your taste buds.
Featured image by Gary Stevens on Flickr
Samantha is a Senior from New Jersey; majoring in Business and minoring in Japanese. She has a large amount of experience teaching English! In her free time, Samantha enjoys hanging out with friends, going out to eat, and listening to music. She has interned at a non-profit organization in Japan this past summer, where she worked with interns from 24 different countries, so she has some insight on dealing with new cultures. Samantha loves learning new things and enjoys meeting new people!