Photograph by Gentl and Hyers Food Styling by Maggie Ruggiero Prop Styling by Theo Vamvounakis

Thai Basil and Scallion Pancakes

Starters from Issue 6 – Fall / Winter 2015 – Magic

As backyard-friendly herbs go, basil ranks high, but its history is more ominous than one might expect. Its name is said to be derived from basilisk, a mythical snake monster than can kill with a glance (Harry Potter fans, you know of what we speak). Our tribute to the once frightful herb laces its Thai variety with scallions in a slim pancake.

serves 6 as a starter

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups very cold water
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup packed Thai basil leaves
  • 5 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil

Dipping sauce
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • pinch red pepper flakes

  • 1

    Whisk together flour, water, eggs, and salt until smooth. Tear the basil leaves and stir in along with the scallions and let stand 5 minutes.

  • 2

    Stir together sauce ingredients and set aside.

  • 3

    Heat a 10-inch non-stick skillet with a Tbsp oil over medium heat, swirling to coat evenly. Pour 1 cup batter into skillet and cook until set and golden, about 4 minutes. Flip pancake and cook 1 or 2 minutes longer. Make 2 more pancakes with remaining oil and batter.

  • 4

    Cut pancakes into wedges and serve with dipping sauce.