Hotteok is pretty much what dreams are made of: yeast dough stuffed with sweet or savory filling. It is very similar to pastries of other cuisines such as xian bing’s in Chinese cooking or paratha in Indian cooking, and the list goes on. The traditional filling is brown sugar and walnuts, but I wanted to do something different and stuff it with ingredients that I have not seen anyone try before. In my version of hotteok, I stuffed them with a combination of chicken, corn, and mozzarella cheese. Corn and cheese are very common in Asian baking, so I wanted to incorporate that into the hotteok.
Tips for making hotteok:
- Stuff as much stuffing into the center without breaking the dough. 2-3 tbsp. of filling is best for the hotteok, but can be difficult to do without breaking the dough. To prevent this, roll the dough so that the edges are thinner than the center. Because the dough is stretchy, you can stretch the brim of the hotteok dough to the middle.
- Hotteok seal becoming undone when cooking. When making the dough, seal the dough tightly and let the formed hotteok set for 20 min. before cooking
- Burnt outside, raw dough inside. The flame of cooking must be in between low/middle with a lid on the pan. Flip the hotteok whenever a side has been browned. Do not walk away from pan!
Savory Hotteok (Korean Stuffed Pancake)
yield: 9 pancakes
Dough (from Houseofnasheats.com):
- 1 cup lukewarm water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 c. frozen corn
- 1 c. chopped cooked chicken meat (I used a rotisserie chicken)
- 1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese or mozzarella cheese cut into cubes
- 4 1/2 tbsp. sticky soy sauce
- In a large bowl, stir together yeast, sugar, lukewarm water, and oil. Let the mixture sit for 8 min until yeast activates.
- Sift in the flour and salt and combine and mix. Knead the dough for 5-10 minutes until fully incorporated and cover the dough with a damp towel. Set the dough in a warm area around 75-80 degrees to let the dough double in size.
- In the meantime, lightly oil a pan with oil spray or vegetable oil and saute the frozen corn until thawed, add chicken and sticky soy sauce. Saute on medium heat for about 5 min. Set aside to cool in a bowl.
- Punch the risen dough, and then cover and let sit for another 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, lightly flour a surface and knead the dough for about 30 seconds and cut into 9 even pieces. Into the cooled corn and chicken mix, add mozzarella cheese and combine.
- Using hands or a rolling pin, roll the dough out until about 3-4 in. in diameter with the outer edges thinner than the middle. Add in 3 tbsp. of filling (make sure to pack it in there otherwise pancakes will turn out to be mainly dough). This may be difficult without breaking the dough, but becomes easier with practice. Pull in the edges into the center and seal tightly. Flatten the dough into a pancake and set aside on a floured surface to allow to rise while you make the other pancakes.
- After all pancakes have been formed, let them sit for 10 min. for a last rising.
- On low-medium heat, lightly grease a pan and wait until pan is completely hot. Add in the pancakes (about 3 at a time) and cover with a lid. Cook for about 5-6 minutes on the first side or until golden brown, and then flip over to cook for another 5 minutes. Remove pancakes and repeat for all others.
- Eat hotteok fresh out the pan when cheese is nice and gooey.
Note: the Pancakes freeze extremely well. I recommend cooking them and then freezing some if you cannot finish them within the next 5 days. You can microwave, pan fry, toast, or bake them out of the freezer.
This is an easy recipe that requires a bit more time from dough making. I highly recommend making them on a weekend as a stress reliever!