Korean Pancakes with Spinach
and kimchi cauliflower
This is the first time we've included Korean scallion pancakes (Pajeon) in a meal plan, but it's long been a favorite dish for the Cook Smarts team. Over the years we've also had a number of members request this savory, vegetable-packed meal.
Smarts: Pajeon are thin and should be cooked at a fairly high temperature so that the batter gets golden and crisps around the edges. If you have a griddle, use it so that the batter has room to spread.
- Cauliflower - 1 lb, chopped
- Kimchi - 1/2 cup, finely chopped
- Beans, garbanzo (14 oz / 397 g) - 1 can, drained and rinsed
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Gochujang - 2 Tbsp
- Soy sauce, low-sodium - 1 Tbsp
- Vinegar, rice - 1 Tbsp
- Oil, toasted sesame - 1 tsp
- Green onions - 6, chopped into 2" / 5 cm lengths, green and white parts combined
- Eggs - 1
- Water, cold - 3/4 cup + 1/4 cup
- Flour, all-purpose - 1 cup
- Cornstarch - 3 Tbsp
- Sesame seeds, white - 2 tsp
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Sugar - 1/4 tsp
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp, plus more for cooking pancakes
- Baby spinach - 5 oz
- Make dipping sauce - (If prepping right before cooking, get oven heating first.) Whisk together Gochujang, soy sauce, vinegar, and toasted sesame oil. Taste and add more Gochujang if you’d like it spicier. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Cauliflower / Kimchi - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Green onions - Chop into 2" / 5 cm lengths.
- Beans - Drain and rinse.
- Heat oven to 450F / 232C.
- On a sheet pan, toss cauliflower with oil (portion for cauliflower), chopped kimchi, and some salt and pepper. Roast cauliflower, shaking the pan halfway through cooking, until golden and tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
- Once cauliflower is in the oven, make pancake batter by whisking eggs with first portion of water. Add flour, cornstarch, sesame seeds, salt, and sugar and whisk until smooth. Add second portion of water a little at a time until the batter is thin and pours easily (you may not need all of the second portion of water). Set batter aside.
- Heat a griddle or large skillet over medium heat. Add cooking oil (portion for pancakes) and then spinach. Saute until spinach wilts and all moisture has cooked off, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with some salt. Set cooked spinach aside.
- Add a thin layer of oil to the griddle. Scatter about 1/8 of the green onions over the oil, then 1/8 of the cooked spinach, and then pour 1/8 of the pancake batter over top. The batter will spread out but you can cook several pancakes at a time if there is room. (Note: This is for 4 servings; adjust if customizing, making about 2 pancakes / serving.)
- Cook pancakes on one side until the bottom is crisp and golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Use a spatula to flip and cook on the other side until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes more. Continue with remaining green onions, spinach, and batter, until all of the pancakes have been cooked.
- When cauliflower is nearly finished cooking, gently stir in beans and return the pan to the oven. Cook until beans are warmed through, 2 to 3 minutes more.
- Slice pancakes into wedges and divide between serving plates.
- Serve pancakes with dipping sauce. Enjoy with cauliflower and chickpeas on the side.
we ended up really liking these but was a bit frustrated by the directions and the ratios. I feel more oil was needed than described and maybe we did something wrong but feel i needed double the batter that the recipe made for the amount of scallions we had. really liked the flavors but was frustrated throughout making it.2 Helpful
This was rad. I am going to make it again0 Helpful
Wow, that was great!0 Helpful
Love the meal!! Perfection!!0 Helpful
We found it a little tricky to make the pancakes look good, but they tasted great. I would put the dipping sauce on everything though!0 Helpful
5 stars PLUS. What are you?! looking at this you would want to skip..... PLEASE DONT! These are a great mix of flavors in such a unique way of cooking them. I am so glad I tried this recipe. The sauce was the star of the show. More like these, please!0 Helpful
Just meh to be honest. The pancakes were pretty bland but the dipping sauce was very good.0 Helpful