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Her millions of fans compare her to Julia Child. An Internet sensation, Maangchi has won the admiration of home cooks and chefs alike with her trademark combination of good technique and good cheer as she demonstrates the vast and delicious cuisine of Korea. In Maangchi’s Real Korean Cooking, she shows how to cook all the country’s best dishes, from few-ingredient dishes (Spicy Napa Cabbage) to those made familiar by Korean restaurants (L.A. Galbi, Bulgogi, Korean Fried Chicken) to homey one-pots like Bibimbap.
For beginners, there are dishes like Spicy Beef and Vegetable Soup and Seafood Scallion Pancake. Maangchi includes a whole chapter of quick, spicy, sour kimchis and quick pickles as well. Banchan, or side dishes (Steamed Eggplant, Pan-Fried Tofu with Spicy Seasoning Sauce, and refreshing Cold Cucumber Soup) are mainstays of the Korean table and can comprise a meal.
With her step-by-step photos—800 in all—Maangchi makes every dish a snap. A full glossary, complete with photos, explains ingredients. Throughout, Maangchi suggests substitutions where appropriate and provides tips based on her readers’ questions.
From the Publisher
Seafood-Scallion Pancake (Haemul-pajeon) from Maangchi’s Real Korean Cooking
Serves 2 or 3
Unlike the flaky, puffy Chinese scallion pancakes you may have had, this is made with a rich, light batter so it’s soft and fluffy inside and crunchy outside. It is filled with scallions, which give it a fresh sweetness. It’s popular as a quick meal or snack, or as a side dish with Korean Rice Liquor. It’s almost always shared in the middle of the table, with everyone tearing off bits with their chopsticks and dipping them into a savory vinegar–soy sauce dipping sauce.
The squid and shrimp are mild; for a stronger version, use shucked oysters instead.
1. Make the dipping sauce: Combine the soy sauce and vinegar in a small bowl.
2. Make the pancake: Combine the flour, egg, salt, and water in a bowl and mix well. Add the scallions and mix well.
3. Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. (If you don’t have a 12-inch skillet, use a smaller skillet to make 2 pancakes.) When the skillet is hot, turn the heat down to medium, add 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil, and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet evenly. Pour the batter into the skillet and spread it into a large circle with the back of a spoon or a spatula. Scatter the squid and shrimp over the pancake, pressing the seafood into the batter and shaping the edges with a spatula to form the pancake. Cook until the bottom turns light golden brown and crispy, 5 to 6 minutes, loosening the pancake with a spatula as it cooks.
4. Turn the pancake over with the spatula. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil around the edges of the pancake, lifting the pancake with the spatula to let the oil run underneath. Shake the pan to distribute the oil evenly. Cook until the bottom is light golden brown and crispy, 5 to 6 minutes. Turn the pancake once more and cook for 2 minutes.
5. Slide onto a large platter and serve immediately with the dipping sauce.
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¾ cup water
8 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 ounces fresh or frozen cleaned squid bodies, thawed if frozen, chopped into small pieces
2 ounces shrimp, shelled, deveined, and chopped into small pieces