Where's Wednesday: From Busan, Korea


INGREDIENTS (for 8 servings) Scallions Seafood (shrimp, squid, oysters, mussels, etc.) 3 Eggs Crispy Korean Pancake Mix (부침가루) Crispy Frying Mix (튀김가루) Korean Red Chili Pepper Korean Zucchini (optional but highly recommended)

Pajeon, a food that reeks of Korean history and geography, first entertained the king's palate in the 1600s.  The dish hailed from Busan, a city by the sea, and was presented to the king as a gift.  Compared to most other traditional delicacies, Pajeon entered the Korean culinary world rather late; Koreans had not eaten fried food until that point.  Despite its relative "young" age, Pajeon embodies the vibrance and beauty of Korean culture like many forgotten Palace delicacies.

While I can't tell you the exact directions to preparing Pajeon because it's all about "feel," what I do want to share is that the Korean pancake mix to crispy frying mix ratio should be 2 to 1.  Most restaurants, particularly in the U.S., sell crispy but not fluffy Pajeon.  I sincerely grow disappointed and disheartened at the sight of misrepresented and ill-prepared Korean food.  Thus, practice, taste, see, and put thought into the dish.  Otherwise, you'll end up with a bland or overseasoned Pajeon that's either too thick or too hollow.

Have fun, Masterchefs!

LOVE, pristine christine