Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Green Onion Pancake (파전)

I love some good kimchi pancakes (김치전). Yum.

But when the kimchi at home is delicious and worth eating without disguising into a pancake, what's left??

Green onions, of course!

Unlike most Koreans I know, I despise green onions. I also hate raw onions. I can eat cooked onions (French onion soup is fantastic), but even when cooked, green onions do not appeal to me. Blech. Something about the stringy texture, I think. I'm not even sure what it is that I don't like, I just know I don't like 'em.

The one form that I will eat them in? Green onion pancake (파전, pronounced 'pah-jeon'):

Doesn't it look just deliciously delicious? Full of deliciousness and delectability? Well ... except for those purply-pink bits of octopus sticking out. *shudder*

I didn't make this particular pajeon, my seafood-loving mother did. She really has an unbearable love of all forms of seafood. I, on the other hand, am extremely picky about seafood and definitely don't eat octopus. I barely eat squid, and only in its bar form (dried cuttlefish, usually eaten with peanuts while drinking some form of alcohol). I most certainly do not eat octopus that has not been deep-fried. Ew.

So while this pajeon was delicious, I picked out the large rubbery strips of octopus and handed them over to the mother, who was more than happy to eat the slimy little sea creatures (why, no, I'm not biased, not at all!).

It's easy to make, just like the kimchi jeon. Ingredients get thrown into a bowl, willy-nilly:

- green onion (chopped into manageable pieces)
- squid/octopus/protein, if you like
- flour (or jeon flour, called 부침가루)
- water
- egg(s)
- seasoning (garlic salt in this case, I think, could be salt or fish sauce or soy sauce)

Mix together until dry ingredients are no longer dry. Proportions just depend on the consistency you like, how humid it is, how big the eggs are, etc.

Add (a lot) of oil into a pan and heat up. It shouldn't be scorching hot, otherwise the outside of the jeon will burn while the inside doesn't cook. It has to be hot enough to crisp up the jeon, though, so I usually start with medium-high, crisp up the first side, flip, lower the temperature, and cook through, sometimes cranking up the heat at the very end to crisp up the second side.

Let the jeon sit on a paper towel for a second- these are actually better when slightly above room temperature. They're not good scalding hot, the way soups and jjiages are.

Serve with whatever you want. We usually have jeon with seasoned soy sauce, which is:

- soy sauce
- sesame oil
- toasted and coarse-ground sesame seeds
- dried chili powder (고추가루 (gochu-garu), not the same thing as American 'chili powder' at all)
- thinly sliced spring onion or baby leeks (부추)

Easy and satisfying.

Just because I have it and because it was so deliciously delicious:

Happy eating!


william May 28, 2009 at 7:52 PM  

wait, you don't like squid or octopus? you are not korean.

jeanny May 28, 2009 at 9:27 PM  

When it comes to seafood, I'm SO not Korean. Ewwwwwww!