Do you crave Korean cuisine after watching Korean dramas with scenes that feature them? Well, you’re not alone; the visually vibrant dishes have a knack for making us hungry, even after a full meal. One popular dish that best represents this East Asian fare is the Korean pancake or Jeon. The good news, is that the Korean pancake is also a dish that can be easily found in Singapore.

Often shared among a group of diners due to its massive portion, this savoury pan-fried battered dish is a must-have in a Korean meal with friends and family.

What is Korean Pancake or Jeon?

The Korean pancake is also known natively as jeon (煎), the direct translation of pancake. Pan-fried into fritters, Korean Pancake consists of seasoned meats and vegetables coated in wheat flour and egg wash before cooking in oil. This quintessential Korean dish can be an appetiser, a banchan (side dish), or an Anju (a food accompanied by drinks).

Korean pancakes can come in variations. They usually reflect the name of the main dominant ingredient. For example, if it only features shrimp, it will be sae-u (새우) jeon or Shrimp Pancake. Jeon also can appear in small coin-shaped sizes like Yukjeon (육전), which translates to meat jeon (typically beef or pork).

The most well-known ones are pajeon, kimchi jeon, and haemul pajeon. Pajeon is a scallion pancake, as pa (파) refers to scallion. Kimchi Jeon needs no introduction as the umami-flavoured Kimchi pancake that everyone knows and loves today, and Haemul (해물 or seafood) Pajeon is a favoured option that can include fish, shellfish, shrimp, squid, and octopus.

How is the Korean pancake prepared and eaten?

Preparation is simple when cooking the Korean Pancake but requires a confident mastery of the stovetop fire. The ready liquid batter – consisting of ingredients like wheat flour, water, soybean paste, and sugar – will be pan-fried on a hot pan. Once the batter solidifies and holds together, flip it to the other side till both surfaces turn a delicious golden brown.

The dish is usually served with a dipping sauce made of soy sauce and chopped chillies.

Head to the 8 best Korean restaurants in Singapore below for the best pancakes:

Ajumma's Korean Restaurant
Ajumma's Korean Restaurant
Location includes Funan, Waterway Point, Bukit Panjang Plaza, and PLQ Mall

Ajumma’s Korean Restaurant, established in 2014 by entrepreneur Dominic Tan, has been well loved by local foodies since its days at the now-defunct inaugural Cathay outlet. The casual restaurant has since moved to Funan and expanded into the heartlands like Waterway Point, Bukit Panjang Plaza, and PLQ Mall. A new outpost at Westgate is also in the works.

Two different Korean pancakes are available on its menu, Kimchi Pancake and Traditional Jang-tteok Seafood Pancake. The former features well-marinated kimchi that’s pan-fried with savoury batter for a crispy texture while the latter amps up the umami by adding a blend of Korean pastes, such as soy sauce (Ganjang) and soybean paste (Doenjang). Ajumma’s Seafood Pancake has an eggy flavour which makes it all the more moreish too.

(Image credit: @ajummasg/Instagram)

62 Tras St, Singapore 079001

Head down to restaurant-bar ANJU for an elevated take on the Korean pancake. As mentioned previously, anju is food that’s paired with liquors like soju (distilled rice wine) and makgeolli (sparkling rice wine). ANJU refines familiar Korean dishes for a more contemporary experience, which pairs beautifully with its drinks menu, which is carefully curated and directly imported from Korean distilleries.

A standout from the food menu is the Hogam Jeon, a Korean-style crispy potato pancake with prawns and zucchini that’s accompanied by an onion pickle soy sauce dip on the side. Its texture is crunchier than the usual light denseness derived from the wheat batter of traditional Korean pancakes.

(Image credit: @anju_singapore/Instagram)

Joo Bar
Joo Bar
5 Tan Quee Lan Street, Singapore 188094

Whenever there are Korean alcoholic drinks, you’ll likely find Korean pancakes on the menu too. Joo Bar, Singapore’s first makgeolli-focused bar and restaurant, features flavoured pours that are local, such as soursop and mango.

The Kimcheese Bacon Pancake and Seafood Pancake is a highlight for pancake lovers here. Cheese in Korean pancake may be unorthodox but it works here with the medley of mozzarella, onion, chive, house-made kimchi, and bacon. Purists will be delighted with the seafood variant that has egg, black mussels, clam, shrimp, and squid for a rich, piscine flavour.

(Image credit: @joobarsg/Instagram)

Wang Dae Bak
Wang Dae Bak
Locations include 22 Cross Street, Holland Piazza, and 93 Amoy Street

In business since 2011, Wang Dae Bak has established themselves as one of Singapore’s go-to Korean restaurants, especially when it comes to K-BBQ. Here, you can taste the best of both worlds with the Half-Half Pancake, pieced together by Seafood and Kimchi pancake halves. Both namesake ingredients here appear in chunks for a deeply satisfying bite. Those who are adventurous or craving something different can try the Seafood Okonomiyaki Pancake.

(Image credit: @wangdaebakkbbq/Instagram)

Locations include Vivocity and Suntec City

Avid Korean cuisine connoisseurs will certainly recognise Chef Baek Jong-won (or Paik Jong-won). The South Korean celebrity chef is famous in his native country for his delicious recipes and highly-praised restaurants. Bornga is one of them. Its menu is a carefully researched assortment of Korean dishes which were developed by Chef Baek, and one of his signature dishes here is the Woo Samgyup. But what’s a Korean restaurant without a good seafood scallion pancake? The rendition here promises a fluffy and eggy bite that’s complemented by crunchy seafood like shrimp and squid.

(Image credit: @borngasg/Instagram)

Locations include 59, 63, and 77 Tanjong Pagar Road and 19 Cheong Chin Nam Road

Nobody can deny that O.BBa BBQ and their sister outlets are one of the best Korean restaurants in Singapore. Besides serving quality cuts of meat for BBQ, the O.BBa brand also does a delectable Haemul Pajeon (seafood scallion pancake). The scallions here are slightly charred to give a fragrant note to the pancake that matches well with the soft seafood and crispy batter.

(Image credit: @o.bba_bbq/Instagram)

31 Tanjong Pagar Rd, Singapore 088454

It takes skills to stand out from countless Korean restaurants located along Tanjong Pagar Road but Todamgol has managed well with a rustic interior that’s reminiscent of an actual Korean diner. You can also expect a variety of authentic Korean fare like spicy sea snails with noodles and a collection of Korean-imported makgeolli (traditional rice wine).

Besides the usual Seafood and Kimchi Pancakes, Todamgol also serves the uncommon coin/medallion-sized sesame leaf pancake with pork and pollack pancake, which are flavourful and pair well with alcohol.

(Image credit: @Todamgol/Instagram)

Pink Candy
Pink Candy
144 Upper Bukit Timah Road, Beauty World Centre #04-60, Singapore 588177

Want to enjoy a Korean meal with a view? Head to Pink Candy at Beauty World Centre for a feast for both eyes and stomach. The alfresco area is an obvious Instagrammable spot, but the star here is the food prepared by owner Helena Kim. Besides favourites like fried chicken and army stew, be sure to order the Kimchi Pancake, which features homemade Kimchi by Kim. The seasoning from the sweet and tart Kimchi locks into the batter, which results in a savoury dish that begs for some beer or soju.

(Image credit: @foodee.diaree/Instagram)

This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Singapore
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These Places Serve The Best Korean Pancakes In Singapore
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