Seafood pancakes

Haemuljeon 해물전

Today I’m introducing you to my family’s all time favorite dish, haemuljeon, a Korean pancake made with a few different kinds of seafood.

Growing up in a harbor city on the southern coast of South Korea, every meal table was abundant with seafood. The traditional open air market was very close to my house so my mom went there every morning and bought all the fresh ingredients that she needed for that day. I used to go with her every morning, holding her hand. I don’t ever remember refusing her offer: “Do you want to come with me when I go shopping?” It was always so early in the morning! How early? 5 or 6 am! The market was usually full of people, even so early in the morning. People came to sell their catch, and some people were coming to buy fresh ingredients like us. And then other people were selling food there, like porridge, noodle soup, and rice cakes.


Haemuljeon was one of my father’s favorite dishes. My mom brought fresh seafood home, chopped it up, and mixed it with green onion or buchu (chives) in a batter and cooked it on a skillet. Since it all happened so early in the morning, I had tons of time left before going to school! These are all such good memories.

This dish is easy to make, and all you need are a few different kinds of your favorite seafood. Fresh oysters, mussels, or scallops will work well, but the recipe below is my family’s favorite. With these ingredients you can make it just like we like to.

Ingredients (Make 10-11 pancakes)

  • 4 ounces deveined and cleaned shrimp, chopped
  • 4 ounces clam meat, chopped
  • 8 ounces cleaned squid, chopped
  • 1 green chili pepper, chopped
  • 2 to 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped carrot
  • ½ cup flour
  • ½ cup potato starch (or flour)
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons vegetable oilKorean seafood pancakes



  1. Put the shrimp, clam, and squid into a bowl. Add green chili pepper, green onion, carrot, flour, potato starch, egg, water, fish sauce, salt, black pepper, and sesame oil. Mix it all together with a spoon.Korean seafood pancakes
  2. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add about 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil and swirl it around to coat evenly.
  3. Take 1 or 2 spoonfuls of the mixture and place it on the skillet. Shape it to round, ½ inch thick about 3 inch wide disks with the spoon. Make a few more disks until your skillet is comfortably full of them.seafood pancakes (haemuljeon: 해물전)
  4. About 2 minutes later, when the bottom of the pancakes turn a little crunchy, gently flip them over.seafood pancakes (haemuljeon: 해물전)
  5. Cook another 2 minutes, and then flip them over again. Cook another 1 to 2 minutes until both sides are light golden brown and crunchy.seafood pancakes (haemuljeon: 해물전)
  6. Transfer the cooked pancakes to a plate.
  7. Clean the skillet with paper towels, add 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil and make pancakes with the rest of the batter mixture.seafood pancakes (haemuljeon: 해물전)
  8. Serve with rice, as a snack, or as a side dish for beer or soju.seafood pancakes (haemuljeon: 해물전)



  1. DAT811 SG joined 4/19 & has 1 comment

    Yums! I am having some friends on Friday for lunch (it’s a public holiday here in SG) & I will be cooking this dish to serve them together with your tofu stew; Korean fried chicken!!!

    Thank you for sharing your delicious recipe Maangchi!
    Love you

  2. bimbo.wildwest Tucson, AZ joined 4/19 & has 2 comments

    These are SO scrumptious! My tastes tend to the, “Weird,” as my family would say, but I LOVE Asian food. Two modifications I made to this recipe – I finished off in my convection oven because I was not sure all the seafood was cooked thoroughly AND, instead of putting oil in the (cast-iron) skillet, I sprayed with olive oil. MUCH lighter on the oil – too much oil is intimidating to me – and the outside crunch crunchier. Also was able to cook longer on the stove top rather than transfer to the convection oven to ensure fish cookery. A MOST delicious recipe – will be using a LOT as I LOVE everything seafood, even Seviche. Looking for a good gravy/sauce to include – I served first batch over stir-fried mung bean sprouts, daikon and carrot shreds with Kimchi. My family thinks I’m nuts…

  3. stonefly Olympia WA joined 11/11 & has 52 comments

    What a wonderful dish! My wife does not like these, so when I make them it is all for me. Yay!!!!!!!!!! I like to make a dipping sauce, too.

    • bimbo.wildwest Tucson, AZ joined 4/19 & has 2 comments

      What type of dipping sauce? Was looking for one on Maangchi’s site but didn’t find anything that sounded like it went well with. I served the pancakes with stir-fried vegetables and rice and, of course, Kimchi. The meal was out of this world! But a sauce was needed. Not a fan of just dashing on high-sodium thin sauces like fish sauce and soy sauce. Looking for something with a little more texture and less salt. Thank you.

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