Pan-fried Open Face Roti John – My Lazy Way…
My dad bought home another loaf of roti peranchis aka “jiam tao lor dee” thinking that there would still be leftovers of the delicious kari ayam cooked from Madam Goh Kim Gek’s wonderful recipe. Well, there was probably like 2-3 pieces of potato, a few morsels of chicken and barely half a bowl of kuah left. Yes most of it has been savoured and devoured over the first loaf, not to mention the bee hoon puteh goreng which he cooked himself for dinner the night before to enjoy together with the curry chicken. If only I’d cooked a bigger pot. I promised him I’ll do so next time as he enjoyed the kari ayam tremendously. What to do with the leftover roti peranchis then? Good to make some Roti John with it!
Thank goodness I have all the ingredients necessary for this simple snack. After slicing the onions and chili, chopping the spring onions and opening a small can of sardines, I got a rude shock when I’d realised that the french loaf my dad bought had already been sliced! Guess he got the bakery people to do it as he obviously wanted to waste no time to dig into the kari ayam which he thought would still be available when he gets home.. kesian dia. hahaha
I knew of Wendy’s Roti John recipe during MFF Melaka 2 years back and had been wanting to try it. But now with the roti peranchis in this state, it doesn’t make sense to do it the oven way anymore. I am in the lazy mode anyway. So I opted to do the Roti John over the stove in a non-stick frying pan instead, much like how we see it being done over here, using large flat griddles in the pasar malams in Singapore
The recipe is quite a no-brainer really. All this is required is to have all the sardines mashed up and the other ingredients added into it. I’d used two eggs and more red chili as well as I like the heat. I didn’t have daon sup (Chinese celery leaves) at home so I didn’t add those. Otherwise, the recipe list remains pretty much the same as on Wendy’s blog.
Wendy did her Roti John in the oven. As I said, I was too lazy to do that. So I toasted/pan-fried the slices of French loaf with some melted butter over a non-stick pan. Only one side needs to be toasted as the other side needs to remain soft for the Roti John “topping” to adhere to.
When the french loaf slices are nicely browned and crisp on one side, they are removed. More butter is then added in which the topping mixtureis being pan-fried. It is essentially an omelette with a lot of goodness in it! It smells so heavenly with the onions and sardines being cooked.
Once the omelette is slightly done, and the ingredients are beginning to dry up slightly and coagulate, the pan-fried bread slices are laid over the half-cooked omelette with the pan-fried sides facing upwards. Be sure to press down slightly so that the slightly wet omelette with stick to the base of the bread. The heat is then brought down to medium-low, for the topping to cook through very slowly. The pan should not be covered as the steam produced, if trapped under the lid of the pan would cause the bread to turn soft. So just give the omelette a minute or two more to nicely dry up on the top surface. The side facing the pan would also brown slightly and nicely crisp up. When it is done, simply use a spatula to “cut up” the omelette, around the perimeter of each piece of bread But of course there would be more abundant topping than bread of course, but that is what homemade Roti John should be about yeah? Enjoy!
Pan-fried Roti John Recipe (Serves 2-3)
loosely adapted from Wendyinkk’s recipe
1 french loaf, cut into thick slices
2 -3 tbsp of melted butter
chili sauce for dipping
1/4 cup crispy fried anchovies
1 small can of sardines (155g)
2 red chilies
1 large red onion, peeled and sliced
1 Tbsp chopped spring onions
2 eggs, cracked and beaten slightly
generous dash of white pepper
Heat up a flat non-stick frying pan and add 1 tbsp melted butter.
Over medium heat, pan fry the bread slices on one side until crisp and slightly browned.
Remove bread slices and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, mash up canned sardines first and mix in all the other topping ingredients thoroughly.
To the same frying pan, add another tbsp of melted butter.
Add the topping ingredients into the wok and spread the mixture to cover the whole pan evenly.
When the omelette is starting to dry up slightly and coagulate, add the bread slices with the pan-fried sides facing upwards.
Lower flame to medium low and cook the omelette slowly until it is thoroughly cooked through. The side facing down should turn nicely brown and slightly crisp.
With a wooden spatula, cut up the omelette along the sides of each piece of bread.
Flip over and dish up onto a plate
Serve immediately with a drizzling of chili sauce (I used Sriracha sauce as I love the heat!)