Korean Seafood Pancake (Haemul Pajeon)

Korean pancakes (pajeon) are a common appetizer. There are a variety of pancakes, such as kimchi or scallions, but seafood (haemul pajeon) is my personal favorite!
I used frozen precooked seafood here, but the original recipe from The Kitchn called for fresh. I think next time I would use fresh (because frozen precooked seafood can taste rubbery) but cook it somewhat beforehand to make sure it's fully cooked for eating. I did not have korean dried hot chili pepper flakes, so I substituted crushed red peppers and took some sauce from a jar of kimchi I had.
I have seen variations that called for part rice flour, part all purpose flour, which I think matches the pancakes made in restaurants or from Haemul Pajeon mixes you get in Korean groceries. I used only all purpose flour which is still pretty good; it doesn't have that same texture, but is denser and quite filling.

Ingredients
Pancake:
1 cups all-purpose flour
1 cups water
1 egg
1 bunch scallions
vegetable oil
2 cups mixed seafood (oysters, shrimp, clams, octopus, squid)

Dipping Sauce:
¼ cup soy sauce
½ tbsp rice vinegar
1 stalk scallion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp Korean dried hot chili pepper flakes (optional)
½ tsp sugar
1 tsp sesame oil

Directions
Mix the ingredients for the dipping sauce and set aside. In a large bowl, mix the flour and water together, then beat in the egg. The batter should have the same consistency as pancake batter. Add the scallions and seafood.

Heat a griddle, skillet, or frying pan over medium high heat and add a thin layer of oil to the bottom. I prefer to use a spray can. Pour about ¾ cup batter into the skillet in a circle. Cook for 6-8 minutes or until the top stops bubbling and the bottom is browned. Flip over and cook another 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate.

Notes: You make the sauce first so that you can eat the pancake immediately when it's done since they're best when eaten fresh. If you want to have leftovers, refrigerate the batter and cook the pancake at your next meal.

2 comments

  1. While using pre-cooked seafood is good, but I think it’s much better if you used fresh seafood. They’re more flavorful, and taste a bit sweeter than the frozen ones. But you were able to achieve the right flavor, so I guess it wasn't a big issue then. Cheers!

    Chris Carpenter @ Domenico’s Monterey

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    Replies
    1. Yeah next time I'd use fresh seafood - frozen was all I had but it works in a pinch!

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