Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hoddeok! Korean Street Food Experiment!

So, its been awhile since my last blog.  This is because my friend Ybur-bot came to visit me and we did awesome stuff that took me away from my computer.
Taking pictures of the river valley in Edmonton!

However, I did make some delicious Hoddeok for us to enjoy.  Hoddeok is a korean style sweet pancake that you fill with yummy stuff such as brown sugar or cheese.  (I did both and both were great).  I used a recipe provided by Maangchi.  As mentioned before Maangchi's recipes are quickly becoming some of my favorites.  The link will give you the recipe. I also suggest watching the video.

The videos are great and particularly helpful so I recommend it!  Here are some step by step photos of me making this great recipe! I used both the brown sugar filling suggested by Maangchi and shredded mozzarella cheese (any melty cheese would work).
The yeast and goodies all mixed together in the bowl
Flour added, note that its quite wet!
Recipe detour: My house is very cold.  This is because it is Sept in Edmonton and I refuse to turn on heat before October.  So, I put the dough in the oven (off, but no draft) to rise for an hour.  However, it was not quite big enough (ie not doubled), so I turned the oven on for a bit (with no dough in it to get it up to normal room temp or slightly warmer).  Shut the oven off, rubbed the outside with some water (this combats the extreme dryness of Edmonton) and put the dough back in for another 10-15 minutes (when I checked it had now doubled in size!).  I then returned to following the recipe.
8 "evenly" sized dough balls
As a note I used the bigger balls to hold the cheese and the smaller ones for the sugar filling. Also, you may notice lots and lots of flour on the counter.  You'll need it!  This is really sticky dough.  Make sure to flour your hands really well before trying to kneed it.
Two fillings are better than 1!
First make a thick circle
Put in a bunch of cheese and pinch shut . . .
Or start to pinch shut and then push in more cheese!
I would like to note that my overfilling method worked really well and did not result in holes or explosions during the later cooking process.  It is really quite simple.  First, put in the normal amount of filling.  Then pinch half shut.  Then pack the hole as full of cheese as you can!
Then pinch the rest of the way shut!
Note that if you have previously had problems pinching dough closed and having seam leaks etc, that is unlikely with the nice wet Hoddeok dough.  It is marvelously forgiving dough!
Sugar, cinnamon, and walnuts!
I tried not to overfill the sugar ones as sugar explosions are much more dangerous than cheese explosions.
I had space for one at a time in my pan . .
they cook super fast so this really wasn't much of a problem.
Flipped and squished!
It takes a surprising amount of force to properly squish to a cd sized disc.  You will need a good spatula (a fairly stiff one works best) and must be willing to push on it with your other hand.  I did this sucessfully with no burns, but be careful.
I don't have a pan with a lid, so I used to pans . . .
At one point you much reduce heat and cover.  I didn't have a lid to use, so you see my solution above.  It works great.
1 done!
Here is one finished hoddeok on the paper towel.  I was a bit worried about the grease level, but this was not necessary.  They didn't absorb too much grease despite my zeal in greasing the pan and it patted off really nicely.  We ate them with our fingers and didn't have gross oil fingers at the end.
Cheese Hoddeok with ninjas . . .
Sugar hoddeok with ninjas . . .
Lots of Hoddeok and ninjas!
This was a really successful and easy meal (we had spinach salad with it to make it a bit more well rounded).  It fed two people to the point of being stuffed with two leftover sugar Hoddeok (that is 3 per person).  Delicious!  I will definitely be making this again!

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