If you’re not in the know about the traditional Chinese street breakfast, jianbing, head on over to Tai Chi Jianbing and educate your taste buds. They’re located at 1325 9th Ave in San Francisco and occupy Nabe Restaurant’s space during the lunch hour.
Cheng, the jianbing master chef at the SF location let me go back into the kitchen and observe the process, which was awesome! In overly simplistic terms, it’s kind of like a big savory crepe. The outside of it is actually made just like a crepe. Cheng, first, cracked two eggs and swirled them around to scramble them a bit.
Then, he sprinkled green onions, sesame seeds, chili flakes, and other spices onto the cooking egg. At this point I was convinced I was looking at the inside of the jianbing, but no! He quickly flipped the whole thing over so the egg and spices side became the outside of it!
Once flipped over, he slathered on some sweet bean paste, garlic chili sauce, and added the fillings depending on what was ordered. The one pictured below is the Fish Rousong, which includes dried fish, kizami nori, mayo, and crispy wonton.
Here’s the amazing finished product for the Fish Rousong jianbing.
My personal favorite was the BBQ Pulled Pork jianbing. Super flavorful and the perfect texture balance of soft and crispy with the crispy wonton, pulled pork, and fresh purple cabbage.
For now they share a location with Nabe, which is open for dinner and Tai Chi Jianbing is open from 9am till the end of lunch.
The ambiance is technically Nabe’s, but it’s nonetheless a sleek looking spot with awesome sake bottle dispenser decor lining the walls.
If you’re like me and had never tried a Jianbing before, you’re in for a serious treat! If you’re on the go, these are totally conducive to carrying around and eating with your hands just like you would a crepe. Enjoy!