My freezer is stocked with probably enough gifted homemade Chinese Bacon (Cantonese: lap yuk) for two years. I didn’t grow up eating Chinese cured bacon, in fact I didn’t grow up eating Chinese cured meats of any sort. They are common in Cantonese dishes but my family is Fuzhounese and growing up we only ever have preserved fish.
Chinese bacon is very different from American bacon. It is a thicker cut of pork belly and it is sweet and savory. Here is a recipe from The Woks of Life. The first time I had it was in clay pot rice. Although I appreciate the flavors, it was a bit too rich for my palette though, to be fair, the generous oiling of the clay pot and the lack of vegetables in the dish had a lot to do with it. Now, having gotten the time to play around with it, I learned to appreciate it as an ingredient added in small quantities to dishes. It adds really good flavor and richness and gives food, like a simple Jian Bing, substance.
The sweet-savory Chinese bacon paired with fresh chives adds texture and complexity in flavor to the jian bing without stealing the show. Although I still love a simple Scallion Jian Bing, when I am feeling a bit more fancy, the bacon & chive hits the spot.
Looking for more savory pancake recipes? Check these recipes out:
- Sourdough Discard Jian Bing: Scallion Egg Crepe Roll
- Sourdough Discard Pajeon (Korean Scallion Pancake)
- Sourdough Haemul Pajeon: Seafood Scallion Pancake
- Sourdough Discard Cong You Bing: Scallion Pancakes
Chinese Bacon & Chive Jian Bing
- 50 g sourdough discard or 25g flour + 25g water
- 50 g water
- 2 tsp corn starch
- generous pinch of salt
- 1 egg
- 2 chives finely chopped
- 1/5 cup Chinese bacon finely chopped
- splash water
- generous pinch of salt
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp black vinegar
- 1 slice ginger thinly sliced into strips; optional
- sesame seeds optional
- Finely mince the Chinese bacon and toast in a skillet on medium high heat until the fat has rendered and the bacon pieces are crispy. Set aside and let cool. You can use the rendered bacon fat in the skillet for the crepes.
- Make the crepe batter: mix together sourdough discard, water, salt, and cornstarch. Set aside.
- Make the egg layer: scramble egg with a splash of water and salt. Mix in scallion. Set aside.
- Heat up the skillet with the rendered bacon fat on medium high heat. Pour half of the batter into the pan and quickly lift the skillet at an angle and rotate it around so the batter creates an even thin layer. When the top starts setting (it will start looking translucent), mix your egg layer again and pour half of it on top of the crepe layer. Lift and rotate your skillet to create another even thin layer. Sprinkle half of the toasted bacon on top.
- Optional: When the egg layer sets, carefully flip the crepe so the egg layer is on the bottom. This will be very quick ~10 seconds. Flip the crepe so the egg side is back on top.
- Using a spatula or chopsticks, roll up the crepe. Alternatively, you can transfer the crepe onto a cutting board and roll it up there. Repeat with the other half. To create thicker crepe rolls you can put the first crepe roll on top of second before rolling it up.
- Make the dipping sauce: mix together soy sauce, black vinegar, ginger and sesame seeds.
- Cut and serve warm with dipping sauce.