Add the dry ingredients in a bowl and without using a spatula, mix them in a circular motion.
Add in the water and mix in a circular motion with cooking chopsticks. Once it's been mixed well, scrape off the ends of the chopsticks and knead with your hands.
Once the dough has stopped sticking to your hands and comes together, cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit for 30 minutes.
Once it's done resting, knead it a little bit more till it becomes shiny and the surface it smooth. Then roll it out to a 1cm thickness.
Fold the dough into thirds and shape it into a rectangular shape. Place it on a baking tray coated in vegetable oil, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator.
Once the dough has returned to room temperature, gently roll it out, divide into 8 portions and knead each into 2 pieces.
Take cooking chopsticks and push down firmly in the center of the pieces. Turn them over and do the same for the backside.
While pulling on the ends, twist them. Deep fry them in oil at 350℉ (170℃), while skimming off any scum, until they reach a good color.
Story Behind this Recipe
I wanted to eat Youtiao! But since I can't easily get my hands on them, I decided to try making them. I compared various recipes there were many different variations like; using Ammonium bicarbonate, and leaving it to rest over night, but I wanted to make something that was easy to make with a leavening agent I had in my house.
In step 3, the dough will still be a bit rough and a bit hard but that is okay. Make sure to let the dough rest properly and and it will become very elastic. I also made soy milk soup (Recipe ID: 1715381) to go with this, but my husband eats it as is.