Korean Pajeon / Pancake Recipe

Korean Pajeon (“pah-juhn”).

This dish, considered more a snack food or starter, is not only easy but a staple growing up in any Korean household. And once you’ve mastered the recipe, it will probably become a staple in your household.

The recipe calls for “Chinese chives” (Gao Choi in Chinese, Puchu in Korean). Chinese chives are stronger in taste than the chives you may be used to on your baked potatoes. The leaves of Chinese chives are flat and cook very quickly. Be sure to use within 3 days as they are particularly fragile little fuckers.

ChineseChives

This past summer we planted our own Chinese chives in our vegetable garden, and so this recipe was used and somewhat abused. Though nobody in particular complained.

~ If you can’t find the chives, no worries. You can always substitute them with thinly sliced bell peppers or grated carrots or diced zucchini or any veggie really, so I can shut up.  Mixed seafood works incredibly well too.

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INGREDIENTS FOR BATTER:

2 cups flour

1½ cups cold water

2 eggs

3 teaspoons potato (or corn starch if that’s what’s handy)

Salt / pepper

OTHER INGREDIENTS:

1 bunch Chinese chives

Vegetable oil

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DIRECTIONS:

1. Wash and pat-dry your Chinese chives (or other ingredients if you’re not going the chives route). Then chop into 1-2 inch pieces and set aside.

WashChineseChives

2. Whisk together your flour, water, eggs, starch and salt/pepper in a large mixing bowl until smooth. The consistency should be just a little thicker than regular pancake batter. The added starch should help, but if you need to go ahead and add a little flour or water to get to the right consistency.

3. Set your frying pan or skillet over a medium flame then add two tablespoons of oil when you think the the pan is sufficiently heated.

4. Add your chopped Chinese chives to the batter mix.

BatterWithChineseChives

5. Using a soup ladle, pour in enough of the batter to just cover the surface of the pan.

~ The thinner the pancake, the crispier it will be. The perfect bite is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. Try not to have too heavy a hand when pouring the batter into the pan.

6. Let cook for 5-7 minutes, checking after 5 minutes to see if the bottom has browned. Once browned, flip with a spatula.

FlippedPancake7. Cook the flipped side for another 5-7 minutes, again checking after 5 minutes to be sure there’s no burning but just beautiful browning.

~ This recipe should yield two pancakes and most likely your second pancake will turn out better looking than your first. Practice makes perfect.

8. Slice up your pancakes into bite-sized or pizza-sliced pieces, whatever size you’re in the mood to put into your mouth. Serve with dipping sauce and enjoy!

FinishedKoreanPajeonI have never personally met anyone who didn’t fall in love with Korean Pajeon, so do let me know if you are the first. I may just faint. Or call you a liar.

If you’d like the perfect dipping sauce to go with this, you can find it here.

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Always dishing,

Jun

 

12 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    You are so right that this recipe turned into a staple for me once I learned it! I have made this probably 5 times since you posted it — so easy, and so good!

    The little changes I’ve made:
    – I use a lot less starch, about 1/2-1 teaspoon per cup of flour. That said, my pancakes usually break fairly easily…. I don’t know why I have some phobia about using so much cornstarch I guess.
    – I found 1/2 teaspoon salt per cup of flour fits my taste.
    – I saute the veg in the pan for a bit and then pour the batter over the cooked veggies.

    But yes, this is so easy and quick and tasty and uses staple foods that are always around. So thanks so much for this recipe!

    Reply
    1. Jun Song Author

      Holy crap! I just edited the starch amount to 3 teaspoons (which is what I meant, not tablespoons) so thanks for mentioning that!

      I’m SO glad this has become a staple for you, it’s such a fantastic little dish :)

      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Oh that’s funny, I actually had READ it as 3 teaspoons, but still use less than that!

        I never have chives, so sliced green onions are my main thing for these – along w/ whatever else I have. Thanks again; so good. :)

      2. Jun Song Author

        Totally! When I don’t have chives I sometimes used very thinly sliced bell peppers along with grated carrots. It’s a great combo. That’s the great thing about this recipe, you really can make so many variations! :)

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