Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Seafood Pancakes (2) | Haemul Pa Jun (해물파전)

Cooking in the summer is kind of like torture. Standing over a stove or even a grill seems almost rude. So, I don't really like to make anything that requires a lot of simmering or babysitting; I want something kind of quick and easy and that's where Korean pancakes come in. I shared a seafood pancake recipe a few years ago, but I thought it was time for an update. Usually, I just redo a post to make it prettier but this time, I have an added ingredient and step that changes this pancake into something really awesome. It's not necessarily that noticeably visible, but it is definitely obvious texturally.
Ingredients [yields 2 large pancakes, serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer]:
1 small zucchini, grated
¼ onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 long hot pepper, sliced
2 scallions, sliced
½ cup mixed frozen seafood
2 eggs
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
¼ cup water
¼ teaspoon sesame oil
½ cup grated potato (frozen works great)
+ oil for frying

Start by grating the zucchini into a bowl. Then, chop up the rest of the ingredients.
Chuck all of the vegetables into the bowl and toss in the frozen seafood, flour, egg, and a splash of water. Stir just until a thick and chunky batter forms; do not overmix.
Get a skillet heating over medium heat and drizzle in enough oil to coat the pan.
Once the pan is hot, it's time for the secret ingredient: grated potato! Sprinkle in a layer and leave them alone to crisp up nicely. The potato adds an amazing crunch to an already crispy crust.
Once the potato has started to brown, scoop on some of the batter and spread it out into an even layer.
Let the pancake cook on the first side for 3 to 4 minutes or until it's set and golden brown. Flip and cook on the second side for 2 to 3 minutes until golden. Add more oil to the pan as necessary to promote browning.
Slap the pancake onto a plate and work on the second one.
For the dipping sauce, just mix together some soy sauce, sesame oil, hot pepper flakes, minced garlic, sesame seeds, chopped scallions, rice wine vinegar, and some Thai chilis - I describe it more in detail in my zucchini pancakes post if you really need a breakdown but I think you can just do it to taste. Or, if you want to be really simple, plain old soy sauce is perfectly acceptable and delicious.
For this meal, I also grilled some kalbi. Again, I went for something that cooked up quickly so I wouldn't have to stand next to the hot grill for more than a few minutes.
The pancakes are light and crisp and hearty; I get excited when I bite into a mussel or piece of squid. And of course, best of all, they're super quick to whip up.
Here's the recipe page:

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