Haemul Pajeon (Korean Seafood Pancake)

It’s been a while since I had pajeon (literally translated pa=green onion/scallions and jeon=pancake, thus green onion pancake) since our California days with unlimited makgeolli (fermented rice wine). But for the sake of adding to our recipe list, I decided to make haemul pajeon (seafood pancake) for tonight old time’s sake. There are endless variations of this dish which can be made by adding or omitting certain ingredients according to personal preference. There are some great places in Korea that make this using fresh, whole seafood that is unbelievably delicious. I’ve tried to replicate it but to no avail.  This dish also referred to as anju (alcohol-accompanied side dish) which is very popular in Korean restaurants and bars. The recipe below also includes a basic dipping sauce that can be made in minutes.

Here are the ingredients for haemul pajeon.
Mix them together well to make the batter.
The batter should be similar to making real pancakes; adding more flour may be necessary.
Add plenty of olive oil (about 1 tbsp) for each pancake. The more, the better just to be on the safe side.
Pour the batter mixture evenly on the non-stick pan.

The dipping sauce consists of soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, garlic powder, sesame oil and seeds.

When the edges start to brown and the batter turns a darker yellow,get ready to flip over. It takes a skilled cook to flip without breaking any part of the pancake.
Here’s a small section that broke apart when flipping,but it made for a good photo shoot I must say.
Our tasty anju (drinking side dish) for tonight.

 

Servings: 2 pancakes
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • olive oil
  • 3 cups seafood medley  (pre-packaged; shrimp, oysters, clams, squid)
  • salt and pepper (to taste)

Dipping Sauce:

  • 3 tbsp soy sauce (or light soy sauce)
  • 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (or garlic powder)
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • ½ tsp gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes; optional)
  • 1 stalk scallions, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seeds


Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients (minus the dipping sauce) together in a mixing bowl until a thick batter mixture is created. It should be similar thickness as regular pancakes.
  2. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat and add a generous amount of olive oil. Pour half of the batter evenly over the pan. Cook for about 7, 8 minutes or until the bottom and its edges are browned. Carefully flip over and cook another 7, 8 minutes or until browned.
  3. Meanwhile, mix the ingredients for the dipping sauce and set aside.
  4. Transfer to serving plate whole or cut pancakes into desired pieces with the dipping sauce.

*Purchasing fresh seafood is a good option for serious seafood lovers. However, it will require more time and energy cleaning them (and sometimes gutting them) so I advise buying ready-made frozen seafood carried by most grocery stores.

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