I'm sorry for my seeming obsession with all things kimchi. But in celebration of Lunar New Year today I wanted to make one of my all-time favorite foods ever: crispy, savory kimchi pancakes. I don't think it's considered a New Year food--it's rather something people enjoy all throughout the year, as snack or as a side dish to your bowl of rice. But pancakes and other pan-fried foods are something you definitely make on holidays in Korea, and I think that is true in many other cultures. Oil-heavy, rich foods tend to symbolize wealth and fullness, and while I don't usually partake in these on a daily basis, why not enjoy something really special once in a while? My personal mantra this year is "Abundance" in all senses of that word and so I am going to eat an abundant amount of this vegan kimchi pancake to celebrate: wishing for more abundance (incoming!), hoping to give out as much positivity as I receive (outgoing!), and giving thanks for what I do have, right now. :) p.s. my mom would use all purpose flour, but I ran out so I just used whole wheat. And guess what? TASTES THE SAME. p.p.s. To "chop" kimchi, the easiest thing is to stick your scissors into the jar of kimchi and just cut through it, right inside. This is far cleaner than taking it out and chopping it on the cutting board. Just trust.
Vegan Korean Recipes: Kimchi Pancake
Recipe Type: Hearty Entrees
YIELDS 1 large pancake (serves 2 as appetizer)
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour (or whole wheat)
- 1 cup kimchi, chopped
- 3 tbsp kimchi juice
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 tsp sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt (optional)
- 2 tbsp oil (I used tigernut; canola also works)
1. Take a large bowl and combine kimchi, flour, kimchi juice, water, sugar, and salt. The batter will look fairly thick. 2. In a large nonstick pan (just trust me), heat oil over medium- medium-high heat. If you are used to using minimal oil for cooking you may be shocked, as I was, by how much oil is involved, but this is really crucial. (Coming from someone who tried to make low-fat pancakes and failed a bunch of times). 3. When the pan is hot, spread the batter thinly over the pan and press down with a spatula to approximately 1/3" thickness. It will sizzle. 4. Flip over after about 2 minutes or when one side is completely crispy and browned. To test, just take the pan handle and shake it a little bit. Pancake should slide easily. 4. Cook the other side for a few minutes until done and serve immediately with a simple dipping sauce. (1 tbsp soy sauce, 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar, some sesame seeds, green onions if desired). Bon appetit and happy New Year!
More vegan Korean recipes: Vegan Japchae (Glass Noodles)
Photo: Peaceful Dumpling
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