Pang Jee: Sweet Thai Pancakes for a Sweet Summer

Last month, I shared my favorite savory pancake recipe in my blog “OKONOMIYAKI Okonomiyaki (お好み焼き) – QUICK AND EASY JAPANESE PANCAKE FOR AMERICAN HOME COOK” with my subscribers and launched a new series of workshops featuring Asian street food.

I recently had the pleasure to cook with Mike and Sam and took them on a figurative food journey to Osaka, Japan. Mike is one of the co-founders of Night Shift Craft Beer, which specialized in fun, creative, and quirky flavors such as Phone Home (peanut butter porter) and Bennington (oatmeal stout with cocoa and maple syrup). Since my okonomiyaki recipe calls for beer, we used one of Mike’s beers for cooking—his Night Lite, a craft light lager. The okonomiyaki we made that night was beyond amazing.

Making pancakes can be very fun because it brings people back to their childhood. For many in the US, making pancakes during the weekends is a family tradition. This dish brings us comfort because it evokes sweet memories from the past. That’s why I always like to encourage people to cook at home as often as possible.

The ingredients for an American pancake are simple: flour, sugar, butter, and eggs. That’s it. Happiness can be so easy. There is no need to cook an elaborate dish and be a slave in the kitchen for days in order to impress your family and friends. The most important thing is to get together and cook!

Pancakes exist in different regions in the world, from the west to the east. Some of them are savory, such as the okonomiyaki and the Korean kimchi pancake. Some of them are sweet, like the American pancake and pang jee.

The ingredients of pancakes from around the world has a lot to do with the terroir of the region. Terroir is defined as the combination of factors including soil, climate, and sunlight that gives food their distinctive character (Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary). Since the terroir in Asia is great for growing rice, both okonomiyaki and pang jee calls for rice flour.

This month, I would like to share the recipe for pang jee.

 

In Thailand, pang jee is a mini banana pancake made of rice flour, banana, egg, shredded coconut, and drizzled with condensed milk to make it taste extra delicious. It’s a popular street food perfect for snacking all day. Not just for breakfast, the pang jee is one of my favorite desserts to nibble in the afternoon!

If you go to an Asian supermarket, you will find two kinds of rice flour: rice flour and glutinous rice flour. If you want to make okonomiyaki, you need to purchase the rice flour (red package). If you want to make pan jee, you need to purchase the glutinous rice flour (green package).

When you are making pang jee, you need to pay attention to its size. Size matters. American pancakes are for breakfast and are usually around 3~4 inches in diameter. In Thailand, pan jee is a snack and are typically around 1.5 inches in diameter.

Pang Jee: Mini Thai Chewy Banana Coconut Pancakes

INGREDIENTS

Makes 20 1.5-inch pancakes

1 cup mashed overripe bananas (from 3 medium bananas)
1 cup unsweetened dried coconut flakes
1/2 cup glutinous rice flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
Coconut oil for cooking
Condensed milk for serving

INSTRUCTIONS

In a mixing bowl, whisk glutinous rice flour, mashed banana, shredded coconut, salt, and sugar until well combined. Let the batter rest, uncovered, and at room temperature for 15 minutes to soften up the coconut.

Heat a flat, non-stick pan over medium-low heat. Drop about 1 tablespoon of batter onto the pan into a round shape and cook for 1–2 minutes until the bottom is golden brown. Flip and press down slightly, then cook until the other side is also golden brown.

Can be served at room temperature or warm. Drizzle the pang jee with condensed milk and enjoy!

If there is any leftover (even though I highly doubt it), keep the pang jee refrigerated, tightly wrapped, for up to 1 week.

To reheat, microwave until hot and soft, then let cool slightly before serving.

If you want to learn more about Asian ingredients and how to do grocery shopping in an Asian supermarket, book a Market Secret Tour with me.

If you want to throw a Thai cooking party at home, or want to book a one-on-one lesson to deepen your understanding of Thai food, book a class now!

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