Breakfast is when street food always beckons me – the early morning life of the streets is just beginning but already the street food vendors have lifted their awnings and are doing a brisk trade in hot soy milk, steaming baozi and crispy you tiao. So many people buy breakfast on the street I actually wonder if any Shanghai locals breakfast at home.
This street food treat hails from Nanjing, but you’ll find it on many early morning street food corners in Shanghai and Beijing.
It’s one of many kinds of bing 饼 – meaning it’s flat and round. You’re probably already familiar with jian bing (rolled savoury breakfast pancakes) and cong you bing (scallion oil pancakes).
This one’s a little different – it’s made of the same yeast dough as you tiao crispy fried dough sticks, so as soon as it hits the oil on the griddle the dough puffs up with big bubbles of air that are trapped as it cooks, giving it a texture like fried sourdough bread.
On top of this an egg is cracked, scallions added and the egg yolk broken. Then the whole thing is flipped so both sides get a crisp finish.
To serve, the vendor will add some hoisin sauce and fold the bing in half to make it easier to eat. Eggy, chewy, light and puffy.
How Many of These Shanghai Street Foods Have You Tried?
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