Ire­mem­ber vis­it­ing a restau­rant in Shang­hai famed for its melt in your mouth pek­ing duck and watch­ing my par­ents deftly use chop­sticks to pile shred­ded meat and crisp skin into the cra­dle of a pa­per-thin pan­cake. Duck pan­cakes have be­come a Chi­nese-restau­rant clas­sic and it is not dif­fi­cult to see why. Dressed with fruity hoisin sauce and paired with fresh sliv­ers of spring onion for crunch, they are fun to as­sem­ble and eat. Young green jack­fruit stands in for duck here – it can be shred­ded in much the same way and soaks up flavours beau­ti­fully. If you don’t have time to make your own pan­cakes, feel free to use a dozen shop-bought wheat spring-roll wrap­pers.



1 x 400g tin young green jack­fruit, pre­pared (see note at end)

1 tsp sesame oil

2.5cm gin­ger, finely chopped

2 tbsp rice wine, dry white wine or ap­ple juice ½ tsp five spice pow­der

Pinch of black pep­per

1 tbsp dark soy sauce

½ cup (100 g) hoisin sauce

Thin strips of car­rot, cu­cum­ber and spring onion, to serve 1½ cups (225g) plain flour, sifted Pinch of salt

2⁄3 cup (170 ml) boil­ing wa­ter 1 tbsp oil, for brush­ing METHOD

First make the pan­cake dough. In a large bowl, knead the flour, salt and wa­ter un­til you have a smooth, elas­tic dough, about 5 min­utes, ad­ding a tea­spoon more flour if it seems too sticky. Wrap the dough in plas­tic wrap and leave to rest for about 30 min­utes.

Mean­while, pre­heat the oven to 200C. Place the shred­ded jack­fruit in a loaf tin. Whisk to­gether the sesame oil, gin­ger, wine, five spice, black pep­per and soy sauce and pour over the jack­fruit. Roast for 15–20 min­utes or un­til very ten­der – there may still be liq­uid in the tin, and that’s okay.

Un­wrap the dough, roll it into a log and di­vide into 12.

Roll each piece of dough into a ball, then flat­ten slightly by pat­ting it with the palm of your hand. Brush a thin layer of oil over six of the flat­tened dough balls, then place the un­oiled dough balls on top of them to form sand­wiches. Use a rolling pin to roll out each sand­wich into a flat pan­cake, flip­ping it mid­way so both sides are rolled evenly.

Set a dry non-stick fry­ing pan over medium heat, place a pan­cake in it and cook un­til it is puffy and the bot­tom is flecked with brown, about 2–3 min­utes. Flip it over and cook the other side for 2–3 min­utes, then re­move. Care­fully sep­a­rate the two lay­ers to give you two pan­cakes. Keep on a plate and cov­ered with a clean teatowel while you cook the rest, sep­a­rat­ing them as well, to give you 12 in to­tal.

Trans­fer the jack­fruit to a serv­ing plat­ter. To eat, scoop a lit­tle bit of jack­fruit on to a pan­cake, top with a driz­zle of hoisin sauce and a few sliv­ers of car­rot, cu­cum­ber and spring onion, then wrap up and en­joy. PREPAR­ING JACK­FRUIT

Af­ter drain­ing your tin of young green jack­fruit, rinse it well in a sieve un­der cold run­ning wa­ter – this helps to get rid of the slightly sweet jack­fruit flavour. Af­ter rins­ing, cut away the tough core of each piece of jack­fruit, then shred the re­main­ing flesh into some­thing re­sem­bling pulled pork. Dis­card all the seeds and seed pods. Im­ages and recipes from Jack­fruit and Blue Gin­ger by Sasha Gill, pho­tog­ra­phy by Sasha Gill, Mur­doch Books, RRP $39.99.

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