The more you travel, the more crepe you have to endure. So here is a selection of my favourite crepes from around the world.
Jeon is commonly eaten as a pancake for anju (food to eat while drinking), but when served by many of Seoul’s famous street food vendors, known as pojangmacha, the jeon is used more as a crepe with which to wrap ingredients such as bulgogi beef, kimchi, or nakji, and can sometimes also include bokkeumbap.
Banh Xeo are Vietnamese savoury fried pancakes made of rice flour, water, turmeric powder, stuffed with slivers of fatty pork, shrimp, diced green onion, and bean sprouts. They are served wrapped in mustard leaves and dipped in a sweet and sour fish sauce. As well as being a popular street food in Vietnam, the Banh Xeo is also popular in Cambodia.
My first ever date with Dosa was on the streets of Mumbai where I ordered a Masala Dosa for breakfast, and ever since then I cannot get enough of them. However, these crepes can also be used for sweets and treats, but it all depends on the filling! The dosa is spread over a hot circular stove and then other ingredients are added to it as it cooks (while you wait).
An Injera is a crepe from Ethiopia, but the difference with this crepe compared to the others is that food is usually laid atop the crepe in a platter (such as spices or stews). I personally have never seen an injera used as a wrap, but it tastes really good whatever the use!
A traditional crepe-like snack from Indonesian cuisine is Kerak Telor. It is made from glutinous rice cooked with egg and served with shredded coconut and sometimes dried shrimp. The warungs of Indonesia sell kerak telor almost unanimously and are known to encourage passers by to fill the crepe with other spicy fillings, including Rendang. On my trip to Jakarta, I couldn’t get enough kerak telor. It became a favourite snack of mine.
The Jianbing is a Chinese crepe and is popular on the streets of Beijing. It is a thin fried-egg pancake that can be filled with many meats and salads. A variation of the Jianbing, the Cong You Bing, originates from Shanghai and is an unleavened flatbread that already contains onion and scallions in its dough. These do not need a filling and can even be purchased from frozen in supermarkets. However, it is the Jianbing that I enjoy most of all!
As if Thailand didn’t have enough awesome street foods, the Khanom Bueang is the Thai version of a crepe. It is usually similar in colour and appearance to the Vietnamese Banh Xeo but has a much crispier texture. I had many of these in Chiang Mai in the night markets there, and I usually found them available wherever Khao Phat was sold (fried rice).
A Durum is the wrap that is usually used in Turkey to cover the meats that have just been carved from the doner kebab rotating spit and served to the customer. While some kebab can be shredded on the plate, or even skewered, most Turks prefer to ear their doner kebab in a durum wrap, and this wrap has a very floury taste.
So what’s your favourite way to crepe?!