Korean Seafood-Scallion Pancake (Haemul-pajeon)

Korean Seafood-Scallion Pancake (Haemul-pajeon) Fry It Up In A Pan
So, I have been continuing my Korean cuisine adventure. It’s been fun and certainly informative. The food has been great. But, I think I now know the reason it’s better to go out and get Korean food. Of course, home made is better, but if yours is not a daily Korean kitchen you will find that having the correct ingredients and the variety of ingredients can be overwhelming. My pantry is not set up to handle this. For example, I wanted to make my favorite tofu stew and it called for kimchi. The kimchi recipe made eight pounds! I like kimchi but with pounds is a bit much. And, my sister will only take so much off my hands. In a nutshell, this quest has made me tired.

As much as I wanted to make truly authentic Korean food (and I am still working on it) my interest has wandered to the dishes that are a little easier to make—and that don’t require a multitude of ingredients that I may only use once.

My main focus has been the pancakes. I love the pancakes. For me, no Korean dinner is complete without at least one pancake and one is usually not enough.

I love these anytime. They’re great for lunch and even better in the middle of your table as a side along with your Galbi or Bulgogi. My favorite are the seafood pancakes but I won’t say no to a kimchi pancake or even just a plain scallion pancake. I’ve also just discovered zucchini pancakes that are served with a pine nut sauce. YUM! I am the only person in my house that would even think about eating zucchini. So, those will be reserved for the nights when it’s just me…whenever that may be.

Korean Seafood-Scallion Pancake (Haemul-pajeon)
Adapted from Maangchi’s Real Korean Cookin
Yields 2 or 3 servings

This pancake recipe calls for shrimp and squid which is pretty mild in flavor. If you prefer, you can ditch the squid and use shucked oysters instead for a stronger flavor.

For the dipping sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

For the pancake
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup water
8 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup flavorless vegetable oil
2 ounces fresh or frozen cleaned squid, thawed if frozen, chopped into small pieces
2 ounces shrimp, shelled, deveined, and chopped into small pieces

Make the dipping sauce
Stir the soy sauce and vinegar in a small bowl.

Make the batter
Combine the flour, egg, salt, and water in a bowl and mix well.

Add the scallions and mix to incorporate.

Make the pancakes
Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. (You can also use a smaller skillet to make 2 smaller pancakes.) When the skillet is hot, turn the heat down to medium, add 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil, and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet evenly.

Pour the batter into the skillet and using the back of a spoon spread it into a large circle. Scatter the seafood over the pancake, pressing it into the batter and shaping the edges of the pancake with a spatula to form a circle.

Cook the pancake until the bottom turns light golden brown and crispy (about 5 to 6 minutes). Loosen the pancake with a spatula as it cooks.

Turn the pancake
Flip the pancake with a spatula. Then drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil around the edges of the pancake. Lift the pancake with the spatula to let the oil run underneath. Shake the pan to distribute the oil evenly. Cook until the bottom is light golden brown and crispy (about 5 to 6 minutes). Turn the pancake over once more and cook on the first side (about 2 minutes).

Serve the pancake
Slide the pancake onto a large platter and serve immediately with the dipping sauce.


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