Haemul Pa Jeon – Seafood and Green Onion Pancake

I’m really digging the fact that so many Korean dishes come together so quickly. Traditional Korean pancakes use wheat and rice flours, but this version with rice flour and cornstarch (bound together with the help of an egg) worked just fine and was both crispy around the edges with a bit of chew.  

I really wanted the focus here on the seafood rather than the pancake itself, so this recipe almost straddles the line between pancake and fritter.This can also be an extremely inexpensive appetizer or meal.  Since the seafood gets chopped up, feel free to purchase broken scallops and smaller, and cheaper, shrimp.  I’m also happy to report that, according to a friend, this easily won the taste test between my gluten-free version and the local Korean market’s.


Seafood and Green Onion Pancake

Yield: 4 servings as an appetizer


* 1 cup rice flour
* 1/4 cup cornstarch
* 1 egg
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup water
* 3/4 pound any combination of squid, shrimp or scallops, cut into small chunks
* 5 green onions, cut into 1-2-inch pieces
* vegetable oil, for frying
* Korean red pepper threads, for garnish (optional)


In a large mixing bowl, combine the rice flour, cornstarch and salt. Add the water and mix until smooth. The batter should be relatively thick. Stir in the seafood and green onions.

In a medium or large skillet, heat one tablespoon of oil over medium high heat. Spoon some batter onto the skillet, making pancakes of your desired size. Fry on each side for about 3-4 minutes, until crispy and the pancakes begins to turn golden.

Repeat with remaining batter, adding more oil when necessary.

Garnish with red pepper threads, if desired, and serve with Soy Sesame Dipping Sauce.

Note: for those of you who eat gluten, here's the general flour ratio from several cookbooks (they all suggest using some rice flour). Use 1 cup wheat flour, 1/3 cup rice flour and one cup water for the dough. This will likely make a much thinner pancake than the gluten-free version I made (again, I was almost going for a seafood fritter), or you can adjust the water amount down for a thicker pancake.

Adapted from the Korean Table

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7 Responses to “Haemul Pa Jeon – Seafood and Green Onion Pancake”

  1. #
    Peggy — April 23, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    This looks like a tasty pancake! I love the shrimp added to it!


  2. #
    Jaime — April 24, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I am living in South Korea for a year, and LOOOVE eating these. They're sometimes served as banchan, a side dish, and sometimes are as the main course, with lots of octopus, shrimp, and other seafood.

    Thanks for the recipe! I might just try these on my own!


  3. #
    Anonymous — April 25, 2011 at 1:54 am

    While living in South Korea a few years back, I ate my share of these pancakes during late nights drinking at the corner bar with friends! I tried this recipe tonight and used regular wheat flour instead of the rice flour & cornstarch. Although the taste is similar to what I remember, this batter is much thicker and resulted in a really hefty, dense pancake, rather than the crepe w/veggies texture. Next time, I will probably thin out the batter a little more, but that's just a personal preference. Thanks so much for the recipe!


  4. #
    CATE — April 25, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Anonymous- thanks for reminding me of my gluten-eating friends :) Gluten-free flours are so different than wheat containing ones. Most Korean cookbooks recommend still using some rice flour with wheat to get some of that crispiness. I'll make a note right now for those who want to use some wheat flour in this recipe!


  5. #
    Angela (Cottage Magpie) — May 10, 2011 at 9:10 am

    This might be a different thing, but I've always had these made from mung bean flour (and with just onions). They're delicious! My parents lived in Korea for a year, so we all ate a lot of Korean food for awhile there. I just remember that they were delicious!

    My other favorites are Dolsot Bebimbap, Kalbi and the next day Kalbi Tang. Yum. Oh, man, now I'm HUNGRY. :-)



  6. #
    grassdirtcorn — October 13, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    Thanks for this! I love green onion pancakes, but haven't had any in two years, since I went GF. I miss them desperately, and can't wait to try this version! I'm sure I'll blog about it. It's a major find!

    How did you make your sauce?


  7. #
    CATE — October 14, 2011 at 5:07 am

    Hope they're as good as you remember :)

    I made a soy sesame dipping sauce for the pancakes… just follow the link above or copy this url- http://www.girlcooksworld.com/2011/04/soy-sesame-dipping-sauce.html.


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