Crispy on the outside and so soft and flaky on the inside – I could eat these Korean vegetable pancakes – known as yachajeon – for breakfast and for dinner!
“Jeon” in Korean could be translated as “pan-fried delicacies,” harking back to a time when oil and flour were rare commodities and a table piled high with battered and fried dishes – filled with everything from vegetables to fish and meat – were indicative of a special occasion. Of course, jeon is a very popular and accessible dish today and takes shape in a number of forms from kimchijeon (kimchi pancakes) to haemul-pajeon (seafood green onion pancakes).
The beauty of yachajeon is in its simplicity and adaptability. The batter comes together in about ten minutes – chopping time included – and can be tailored with your favourite veggies and add-ins.
The highlight is most definitely the sweet and savoury dipping sauce served alongside. This is a dish which makes for a great snack, side dish or appetiser!
Key Steps For Making Korean Vegetable Pancakes
- Make the batter: The batter comes together with all-purpose flour, corn-flour, water and salt. We will whisk together these ingredients until smooth, then add in our choice of veggies. You could even add sliced kimchi (transforming this into kimchijeon!). For this recipe, we are using:
- Spring onions,
- Cook the pancake: First heat oil in a skillet. Then spread the batter out evenly into a round shape, flattening it gently with the back of your spatula. Cook until both sides have browned.
- Dipping sauce: While the pancake is cooking, whisk together a quick dipping sauce with:
- Soy sauce
- Sesame seeds
- Gochugaru (crushed red pepper flakes)
Tips For Perfecting Your Yachajeon
- Slice your veggies lengthwise before adding them to the batter.
- When spreading the batter into the skillet, be gentle and don’t press down too hard, as we want a lightly-textured pancake!
- Lower the heat and let the pancake cook evenly on both sides as we want the veggies to cook through. Be sure to flip the pancake at the halfway mark; and you can also add a splash more oil as required.
Tips For Serving These Korean Vegetable Pancakes
- Slice up the yachajeon into bite-sized pieces and serve with the dipping sauce on the side.
Korean Vegetable Pancakes (Yachaejeon)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp corn flour
- ½ cup water
- 2-2½ cups vegetables of choice, sliced lengthwise (you could add spring onions, carrots, cabbage and onions)
- 1-2 tbsp neutral cooking oil
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- sesame seeds
- gochugaru/ chilli flakes
- To make the batter, whisk together all-purpose flour, corn flour and water. Give it a good mix until smooth, then stir in your favourite veggies, sliced lengthwise.
- Heat a splash of oil in a non stick skillet.
- Spread the batter evenly into a round shape, flattening it gently with the back of your spatula.
- Lower the heat and let it cook evenly on both sides (we want the veggies to cook through) , flipping halfway. Add a bit more oil if required.
- Slice and serve with a quick dipping sauce mixed together with soy sauce, vinegar, sesame seeds and chilli flakes.
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We’d love to hear from you! Do let us know if you try this recipe – you can leave a comment below and/ or tag us in your delicious creations on Instagram @the_foodiediaries.
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