Pumpkin is, perhaps, the trademark vegetable of Autumn and here I am… posting one pumpkin recipe in the spring time.
(Oh, Holly! Be aware of season! )
I went to a grocery store to buy zucchinis but came home with a piece of pumpkin instead. All because, when I saw a few displayed on the shelf, I felt bad that I didn’t eat enough pumpkin last fall.
I bet I am the only weird cook who felt bad about not eating enough pumpkin during fall/winter season in the beginning of March. Or maybe I just wanted to hold on to the time of past and not being ready for the changes that are coming ahead (=a sign of aging).
Anyway, I gave some thoughts on what I am going to do with my pumpkin friend and decided to make 늙은 호박전(neulgun hobak jeon), which translates to “the aged pumpkin pancakes”.
Yes, an aged pumpkin works the best which holds fully developed flavor and texture. When a Korean pumpkin gets older(?) the skin holds white powdery surface over their beige-sh orange color. I used Australian pumpkin (similar to Kabocha pumpkin) that was available in the store. Any pumpkins should work fine.
This is slightly sweet and savory pancakes which can be whipped together so fast. The only drawback is you need to slice the pumpkin to thin matchsticks. But if you have a food processor the whole thing can be put together within a blink of an eye. Just saying…
Had an enough pumpkin in the fall? Then, put a bookmark on this page and wait until next fall.
I could use my food processor but I hate washing the 5 compartments of it afterward. Beside slicing pumpkin is quite fun to do.
Now, put them in a bowl, sprinkle 2 Tbsp of sugar (more if you desire sweeter) and 1/2 tsp of kosher salt. Mix well and let it sit.
After 10-15 minutes you will see some moisture coming out of pumpkin. DO NOT drain!!!! You NEED that liquid. In fact it is the only liquid you need for this recipe.
Flip and you will see a slight golden crust is formed. Drizzle a little more oil around if needed.
Slightly sweet yet fully loaded with natural pumpkin flavor, this makes comforting pancakes to savor.
I had an unfortunate event happened a few days ago. I was driving my car and got stuck in a traffic on the way to pick up my son from his after school activity. I was attacked by a motorcyclist robber. He banged passenger side window of my car to snatch my purse. Luckily I left my purse on the floor and he couldn’t reach to the purse. (He has to have an elastic arm to reach to the purse that was left on the floor of an SUV vehicle from his scooter type motor bike. I don’t know what he was thinking!)
After all, he gave up and drove off. I couldn’t chase him down due to being caught in the traffic. The whole thing happened within 3 seconds, the longest! Lightening fast! I was left stunned, speechless, and helpless.
Fortunately I was unharmed and my purse was safe, but the passenger side window was broken with million pieces of glass covering the seat. I heard about this type of “smash and grab” robbery many times from other people and I finally got my story to tell.
However, I am very thankful that I was safe. It could have been worse. Because I had my Nikon camera in the purse, so if the purse got stolen, I wouldn’t be able to post any recipes in my blog for who knows how long.
Well, isn’t life full of surprises?
Stay safe, guys!
Korean Pumpkin Pancakes
- 1 lb 450g pumpkin, seeded and peeled
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup flour
- 2-3 tablespoon for frying
- 1 green chili sliced, optional
for the dipping sauce:
- 2 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 green chili seeded and minced
- 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- Slice pumpkin thinly and cut into 1/8" thick matchsticks.
- Put pumpkin slices in a bowl and sprinkle with sugar and salt, toss together, and let it sit for 15 minutes to extract moisture. Do not drain.
- Add flour and mix well. Adjust amount of flour depends on the amount of liquid extracted from pumpkin. let the mixture sit for 5 minutes.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet over med-low heat. Spread 2-3 tablespoonful of pumpkin batter to thin layer (Adjust the size of pancakes as you desire). Place chili slices on top, if using.
- Cook 2-3 minutes on each side or until you get slight golden crust on both sides and the pumpkin gets soft. Press with a spatula gently to sear the surface as you flip to the other side. Drizzle more oil when needed.
- Serve hot with dipping sauce. The pancakes is good either way, with or without the dipping sauce.