This pancake is my absolute favourite and is also one of the most popular variations at any Korean restaurant. The crispy pancake studded with an array of seafood brings a great range of textures and flavours.
- 4 spring onions (scallions)
- vegetable oil, for frying
- 200 g (7 oz/1 cup) mixed seafood
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
Spicy soy and spring onion sauce, to serve
- 60 ml soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice (or white) vinegar
- 6 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tsp caster (superfine) sugar
- 2 tbsp Korean chilli flakes (gochugaru)
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2-3 spring onions (scallions), thinly slice
Korean pancake mix
- 110 g (4 oz/¾ cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
- 2 tbsp rice flour
- 2 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 cm (¾ in) piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
- To make the sauce, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Set aside (any leftover can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days).
- To make the pancake mix, sift all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add the garlic and ginger, 185 ml (6 fl oz/¾ cup) iced water and the egg, and whisk until the batter is smooth with no lumps. Add a little more water to loosen the batter if necessary. It should be thick but still runny with the consistency of pouring cream. Set aside.
- Trim the roots off the spring onions, then cut into 5 cm (2 in) lengths. If the white parts are thick, split them in half lengthways.
- Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add half the seafood and fry for 2 minutes, until slightly browned. Spoon half of the beaten egg over the seafood.
- Give the batter a quick stir then ladle half of the batter into the pan. Use the back of the ladle to spread the batter out to the edges of the pan. Lay half the spring onions in a single layer on top of the batter. Fry the pancake for 4–5 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom. Use a wide spatula to flip the pancake over. Add another tablespoon of oil, press the pancake down with the back of the spatula, and cook for a further 4–5 minutes, until golden brown.
- Transfer the pancake to a baking tray lined with paper towel to catch any excess oil. Repeat with the remaining batter and ingredients.
- Serve immediately, allowing people to tear bits of pancake off with chopsticks. Serve the soy and spring onion dipping sauce on the side.
Recipe and images from Little Korea: Iconic Dishes and Cult Recipes by Billy Law, Smith Street Books, RRP $49.99