When we say pancakes, what time of the day do you usually think of? Morning? Breakfast time? In Korea, there is a special kind of pancake called hotteok (호떡), and it is eaten at any time of the day!
Hotteok is a very popular Korean street food usually made from a yeast dough with a syrup of brown sugar and cinnamon, walnuts on the inside, then squished flat and fried. Even though it’s typically made in a sweet fashion, hotteok can also be made savory with fillings such as cheese or japchae.
Hotteok was brought over to Korea in the 19th century when Chinese soldiers were sent there by the Qing Dynasty. Their pancake had savory fillings instead of sweet, but it’s said that most Koreans preferred sweet over savory, and therefore, hotteok as it is now was born!
If you’re not in Korea and you want to try something similar to hotteok, you can always try these hotteok-flavored Margaret cookies. They have the appeal of a cookie while having the taste of a regular hotteok. Now, it might be difficult to find these cookies at your local supermarket, but if you are able to get your hands on one, be prepared for a delicious treat!
If street food vendors and hotteok-flavored cookies aren’t available options for you, you could always try making your own:
If you’re ever in Korea, it’s definitely a must to get hotteok!
Along the way, don’t forget to also try some of the good-looking food offered at the other street vendors, too!
Written by Kaitlin Clifford