Perfect Beef Xian Bing (Chinese Meat Pie)
This straightforward recipe guides you through creating perfectly juicy and flavorful beef xian bing at home.
- 400 g all purpose flour about 3⅓ cup loosely measured
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 250 g hot water (see note) 150°F/65°C, 1 cup + 1tbsp
- 1 tbsp Sichuan peppercorn
- ⅔ cup water
- 1 lb ground beef 20-30% fat
- 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp rice cooking wine or Shoaxing wine
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp sugar
- ⅛ tsp white pepper powder
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 scallion chopped
Make Beef Filling
Soak Sichuan peppercorn in water for 30 minutes (at least) to a few hours.
In a mixing bowl, mix ground beef with ⅓ cup of the Sichuan peppercorn water from the previous step (discard the peppercorn), stir with a pair of chopsticks until water is absorbed completely. Add grated ginger, soy sauce, rice cooking wine, sea salt, sugar, white pepper powder, black pepper, egg and sesame oil.
Stir the beef mixture in the same direction until it's sticky (about 2 minutes). Add in chopped scallions and mix well. Cover and store it in the fridge.
In a mixing bowl with flour and salt, pour in warm water (around 150°F / 65°C), stir until the water is all absorbed.
Form mixture into a dough ball. Continue to knead for 2 minutes until the surface becomes smoother. The final dough should be soft but not sticky if you touch it with your clean hands.
Coat the surface of the dough with a thin layer of oil, cover and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and then form each piece into a ball by folding the edges to the center and pinching them together. Cover with damp towel and rest for 10 minutes.
Take out one piece of dough and place it on a lightly floured working surface, roll it out into a circle of about 5" (12cm) diameter that's thinner on the edges. (Watch video for demonstration.)
Place the beef filling in the middle (about ¼ cup) , lift up the edge of the dough two sides at a time and pinch them together into the center tightly. Finally, rip off the extra dough and apply some flour on the top of the xian bing. Place it seam side down under a damp towel and repeat this for the rest of the dough.
Heat a frying pan with 1 tbsp of oil over medium low heat. Once pan is hot, place the xian bing in smooth side down and cook for 3 minutes or until lightly brown. Carefully flip the xian bing, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for another 3 minutes.
Now uncover the pan, turn the heat back to medium/medium high and cook until both sides become golden brown, about 1-2 minutes more. Repeat the same to finish cooking the rest of the xian bing.
Let the xian bing cool down a little before enjoying. I like to take a small bite, suck out some flavorful juices before enjoying the rest of the xian bing.
If you don't have a food thermometer, just boil the water until it's steaming and the bottom of the pan is covered with tiny bubbles.
When you form the dough, it will seem sticky at first, but just keep kneading and you will get a soft and bouncy dough.
Ripping off the extra dough prevents the xian bing from getting a thick disk of dough that's hard to cook through. You can also cut it off with a pair of scissors if you prefer.
Always cover the dough/xian bing you are not working on to prevent the dough from drying out.
Adjust the heat and cooking time if your xian bing is browning too quickly. Check the bottom of the xian bing occasionally to prevent it from burning.
Calories: 240kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 346mg | Potassium: 167mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 45IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 3mg