Sunday, September 9, 2012

Hot for Hotteok

I had recently gotten my hands on a Director's Cut version of Musa: The Warrior, and set up a screening at my place. Of course, I had to make it a theme night, so I looked up some Korean snacks, and selected hotteok. An alternative I considered was bindaettok, but I was concerned about its appropriateness for a light teatime snack, it being rather meaty, savory and spicy. So I settled on hotteok, the sweetness of which made a great accompaniment to the flower tea.

To start with, stir sugar and a bit of dry yeast into warm water, and let it sit and foam up.

In the meantime, mix wheat flour, rice flour (important to give it the crispiness) and some more sugar.

Add in the foamed-up yeast/sugar mixture, and some soy milk.

Fold and knead into a dough, put in a large bowl, cover with plastic film and let it sit somewhere warm (like the outdoors in Dubai)

While it sits, mix brown sugar, chopped walnuts and a little cinnamon.

This will be the filling.

After a couple hours, the dough should have doubled in size.

For each hotteok, take a small ball of expanded dough, flatten it, put the filling in and fold the edges of the disc over the filling to cover and seal it into a ball. Pop it on a sizzling-hot oiled pan, and use the clean bottom of a coffee mug (if you don't happen to have a genuine hotteok press) to flatten it. Fry on both sides until it browns a bit, and soak the excess oil into a thick tissue paper sheet after removal from the pan. Pay close attention while it's frying - it's easy to burn if you leave it on too long, and I had to discard a couple on that account.

Serve hot and crispy with tea.

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