Chang fen: A Chinese breakfast staple

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This morning I returned to my local laoban to do a Chinese food video about breakfast. Today we had chang fen (肠粉) which is a common breakfast dish made with rice paste, eggs, vegetables, and ground pork covered in a pork fat broth with soy sauce and chopped garlic. I probably have chang fen at least once a week living here. I find it to be a relatively healthy option – as this is steamed and not fried, and I enjoy eating as healthy as I can.

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The laoban adds rice paste (Ground up rice with water added) to one of the steam trays.

To make chang fen, a large multi-layer steam rack is used. Generally they start by pouring rice paste and covering the tray with it, and then adding ground pork, a few vegetables and cracking an egg or two on top. The mixture is stirred around and sent into the steamer for less than a minute. When it comes out, it is scraped off and set onto a serving plate.

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Sending a tray of chang fen in the steamer

When it comes out, it is quite a pretty sight to behold. The taste of chang fen is interesting to say the least. The texture is sort of a thin jello-ey texture that without the sauce is not exactly bursting with flavor. Rice paste is of course made of white rice, and as we all know white rice has a fairly brand and neutral flavor. However when it is coupled with vegetables, meat, and a nice pork broth with garlic and some chili sauce on top, the flavors go a million ways! The pork broth gives a rich decadent flavor especially when you get those chunks of ground pork in the bite. Grasping some chopped chilis with your chopsticks in a bite adds a spicy aspect to this dish as well.

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Chang fen in all its steamed glory

I also blogged about chang fen back in April, you can see that post here: Chang fen: A cheap, delicious and exotic breakfast in China. Don’t forget to check out the video from this morning’s breakfast which includes video of the cooking process and tasting, from my YouTube channel! Please like/subscribe if you enjoy the content!

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2 thoughts on “Chang fen: A Chinese breakfast staple

    sehunqt said:
    June 17, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    This was my favourite breakfast when I was younger!

    Like

      ianwyoung responded:
      June 17, 2016 at 1:22 pm

      Nice! I think it’s healthy since they don’t really use oil (If they do, it’s a very small amount and it is steam-cooked. I always order mine with 2 eggs though 😀 Are you from China?

      Like

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