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Spicy Beef Pancakes

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Serves: 4

50g / 2 oz plain flour
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
1 large egg yolk
150ml / 1/4 pint milk
4 tsp sunflower oil
slices of spring onion, to garnish

For the spicy beef filling:
1 tbsp sesame oil
4 spring onions, sliced
1cm / 1/2 inch piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
300g / 11 oz sirloin steak, trimmed and cut into strips
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1 tsp sherry vinegar
1 tsp soft dark brown sugar
1 tbsp dark soy sauce


Sift the flour, salt and Chinese five-spice powder into a bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the egg yolk and a little of the milk. Gradually beat in, drawing in the flour to make a smooth batter. Whisk in the rest of the milk.

Heat 1 teaspoon of the sunflower oil in a small heavy-based frying pan. Pour in just enough batter to thinly coat the base of the pan. Cook over a medium heat for 1 minute, or until the underside of the pancake is golden brown.

Turn or toss the pancake and cook for 1 minute, or until the other side of the pancake is golden brown. Make 7 more with the remaining batter. Stack them on a warmed plate as you make them, with greaseproof paper between each. Cover with foil and keep warm in a low oven.

Make the filling. Heat a wok or large frying pan, add the sesame oil and when hot, add the spring onions, ginger and garlic and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the beef strips, stir-fry for 3-4 minutes, then stir in the chilli, vinegar, sugar and soy sauce. Cook for 1 minute, then remove from the heat.

Spoon one eighth of the filling over one half of each pancake. Fold the pancakes in half, then fold in half again. Garnish with a few slices of spring onion and serve immediately.

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