This is an example of cooking on the whim. I like Korean restaurants and I've eaten at many. One thing I've never felt like trying is their savory pancakes. No idea why... just never ordered that. Suddenly, one day I'm talking to one of my best mates on MSN - she's Korean and we're talking about cooking. Korean pancakes get brought up and I get a huge craving. Another case of me craving something I've never tried before. This happens a lot. And I get an unfortunate, unhealthy and unrealistic desire to try and cook these dishes without having any mental goal of what I'm aiming for.
In this case, I had my friend's instructions and some online recipes as a guide. The rest was fiddling around and crossing my fingers. I'll admit outright that I have no idea if my pancake turned out 'right'. I had 2 attempts - the first one fell apart and I modified my technique in the 2nd attempt (used a dish to flip the pancake rather than trying to turn the whole thing with a small spatula). The pancake felt really fragile... after discussing this problem with my friend, I think it could be because a) my batter wasn't thick enough and/or b) I put too much grated vegetable, which releases water and weakens the batter.
Oh well, we live and learn. I thought my pancake still tasted pretty good, especially when accompanied with the dipping sauce. It's a healthy recipe and one I'll try again. If I get more success, I'll update this post.
Korean Savory Seafood Pancake
Makes 2 (depending on size of your frying pan)
- 1/2 cup of cake flour (you can put 1 tbsp of cornstarch in a cup and fill to the 1/2 way mark with plain flour)
- approx. 1/4 cup water
- 1 egg
- 1 grated zucchini
- 1/2 grated carrot
- 300g seafood marinara mixture
- 3 tbsp light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- dried chili flakes (optional)
1. Mix the flour, water and egg to form a batter. Add more or less flour/water to get a thick, pancake-like batter consistency.
2. Add in the grated vegetables and stir to mix.3. In a non-stick frying pan (size of frying pan determines the size of your pancakes), heat a decent amount of vegetable oil on high and spread it out evently. Place 1/2 the seafood mixture evenly onto the frying pan. Once it's sizzling and cooking, pour 1/2 the pancake mixture ontop and gently spread it around into a circle to cover the frying pan.Cook the seafood first
4. Turn the heat to medium and wait until the pancake is set throughout, even in the middle.
5. Gently turn the pancake onto a dish (by placing the plate over the frying pan and quickly turning the frying pan upside-down). Then, slide the pancake back into the frying pan so that the side that was being cooked before is now facing up.One side is cooked
6. Cook the 2nd side for another 5min or so till the whole pancake is set throughout and both sides are golden and crispy. Some recipes suggested doing the flipping thing a second time so that each side is fried twice to get super crispy results but when I tried that, my pancake started falling apart.Other side is also cooked
7. Make the dipping sauce by mixing together all the ingredients in a dish.8. Slide the finished pancake onto a plate and cut into wedges. Serve with the dipping sauce.
I already went through my verdict on the outcome. Flawed but tasty enough that I'd like to work on this recipe again. I think I might try adding a bit of baking powder and using less grated vegetables. The zucchini does make this pancake nice and moist with a pleasant sweetness though so it'll be tricky to optimize.