Today, we wanted to show you how to make Youtiao,
Chinese deep fried breadsticks. They’re a really classic breakfast food
that you can find all over the streets in China… a good Youtiao’ll be crispy on
the outside, nice and airy on the inside, and also easily pull apart. Now, at least for me, I can’t really separate
breakfast Youtiao from freshly made soymilk… so if making homemade soy milk’s new to
you, I’d definitely recommend checking out our how to make soymilk video as well. So right, to get started with Youtiao, we’ll
need flour. This was 200 grams of all purpose flour, 10.5%
protein to be exact. For the style of Youtiao that we’re making,
we’re going with 62.5% hydration, so 125 grams of water. Now because we’ll never not be annoying
and obsessive, to make the Youtiao extra crispy, to that water we’ll add in some dried cuttlefish
bones. Now, please understand that these bones are
totally optional, you can get great results without as well… but cuttlefish bones are
high in calcium carbonate, which promotes puffing and also helps reduce browning which
allows our Youtiao to fry for longer. Historically, the most traditional Youtiao
additive was Borax, which would probably be fine but may or may not be acutely toxic…
so pounded cuttlefish bone it is. So then to those 10 grams of cuttlefish bones,
add in your water, and continue to pound that together for about a minute. Then pour that through a tofu or cheesecloth,
and squeeze out any excess liquid. Now again, if you can’t find cuttlefish
bones, don’t worry, just charge ahead without… because we’ve got a few more leaveners on
the way. We’ll also be adding in one gram of baking
powder, two grams of baking soda, and two grams of our old friend… choufen, ammonium
bicarbonate. Now note that Chinese choufen is actually
not pure ammonium… it’s generally about half ammonium bicarbonate and half baking
soda, so if you’re using pure ammonium bicarbonate, use only one gram and up the baking soda to
three grams. We’ll also be adding in six grams of egg
white, which crisps up Youtiao dought much in the same way it does pizza crust, and also
six grams of salt. So just add all those to your bone water,
give it a good mix, then sift in your flour. Combine well, and knead for about five minutes
until it comes together and no longer sticks to your hands. Then cover that with a damp towel, and let
it rest for one hour. An hour later now, we’re ready to make some
Youtiao. Oil up a silpat or some other smooth surface,
and also rub a generous amount all over your dough. Then, roughly shape it out into a log, slice
that log in half, press it down with you hands, then roll it out into a thin sheet about two
millimeters thick. Then slice that sheet in half, and cut those
into roughly two centimeter wide strips. Stack the dough pieces on top of eachother,
then continue with the remainder, cover all that with a damp towel, and let the dough
relax for another ten minutes. Now to fry, get a pot of oil up to 180C, then
quickly finish forming your Youtiao. To do so, press down on the dough with a chopstick
so that the two pieces stick together, lightly press the edges, and firmly press and shape
the ends into a sort of fan with your thumbs. Then pull it longer, move over to the wok,
pull it a touch longer again… and drop in the oil. But at this point… we gotta be honest, we
bumped into a problem. For some reason, our Youtiao just weren’t
puffing up nice like we’re used to. We tried getting the oil hotter… but that
wasn’t much help. Eventually we figured out that that the issue
was dry dough. We were outside, it was a windy day, and setting
up the camera and everything took a while. So while this batch was edible it’s not
what you or us really want, so we took things inside and made a whole new batch. Much respect to the venders that can do this
outside everyday on the street. So forgive the lighting here, our kitchen
is about as bright as the crypts of Winterfell… same deal, 180 centigrade oil. Drop your stretched Youtiao in, and let it
do its thing. It’ll quickly rise, but don’t flip til
it’s nice and puffed up… about thirty seconds or so. Let it go on the other side for about fifteen
seconds, then continuously flip the guy until it’s browned to your liking, about fifteen
to thirty seconds more. Now quick word that sometimes when you drop
in your Youtiao, you might can get a bit of curving… if that happens, you gotta straighten
it like within the first three second of cooking… but even if you can’t get to it, a slightly
curved Youtiao isn’t the end of the world. Now if you’ve never had Youtiao before,
word of warning that they’re only good straight from the fryer. After even just ten minutes they start softening
and becoming chewy… so be sure to enjoy them immediately after cooking.

Youtiao, Chinese Fried Dough Stick (油条)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *