Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Vietnamese Style Savoury Crepes (Bahn Tom) and Cucumber Relish (ขนมเบื้องญวนกับอาจาด )

We like Vietnamese food but one problem we have had when we eat out at Vietnamese restaurants here is that they often use peanut oil for cooking and Bob has developed nut intolerance in the last 4 or 5 years so we (or I – to be precise), have to try to cook Vietnamese food at home and omit nuts in the recipes.

This is one of the dishes that I can cook quite OK (after a few disasters in the beginning). The recipe is adapted from the Australian Women’s Weekly’s Easy Vietnamese-Style Cookery. This portion should be enough for 4 medium size crepes.

½ Cup rice flour
¼ cup corn flour
½ tsp Turmeric
½ tsp sugar
2 Spring Onions, thinly sliced
1 ¼ cup coconut milk (or 1 cup coconut milk and ¼-1/2 cup Soda Water for extra crispy crepes)
2 eggs
1-2 tsps Fish Sauce
Mix all ingredients together and set aside.
1 Carrot, grated
50 grams mushrooms
15 frozen tiger prawns, thawed
2 cups bean sprouts
3-4 Tbsps chopped coriander leaves
1 Tsp fish sauce or 1 tbsp soy sauce
Salt & pepper to taste

Use a wok on medium high heat, cook prawn quickly with a little bit of oil until just cooked. Add fish sauce or soy sauce. Set aside in a mixing bowl. Cook carrot and mushrooms separately and briefly, using the same wok. Mix carrot, mushrooms into the cooked prawns – leave out the vegetable juices (from cooking). If you do not want to waste the juices, you can mix these in the batter.

Heat a nice clean non-stick wok/pan on medium high heat. Add a little bit of oil and wipe off the excess. When the wok is hot, add ¼ crepe mixture into the pan, tilt the wok/pan quickly until the base is covered. Wait until the edge comes away from the wok and add a little bit more oil (under the crepe). Cook until the underside is golden brown. Place ½ prawn mixture in the lower half of the crepe, add a handful of bean sprouts and fold the crepe over. Serve warm with cucumber relish.

Note: Someone has suggested that we should add a bit of soda water in the batter to make the crepes crispier. Maybe next time I’ll do that.


Cucumber Relish (A-jad)
1 cup of peeled and sliced (1/2 cm thick)cucumber
1 shallot or ¼ red onion, thinly sliced
1-2 Red or green chillies, sliced diagonally
1/4 cup water
2 tbsps sugar
2  tbsps white vinegar
¼ tsp salt

Dissolve sugar in water in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes. Add salt and vinegar, stir until combined. Leave to cool completely. It is best to make this in advance so you can refrigerate it as it is best served cold.

Pour the vinegar syrup over cucumber, shallot and chillies just before serving.

Note: This cucumber relish is good as a salad with many Thai dishes

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