When your hubby takes the kids snowboarding for a few days leaving you in childless bliss, the least you can do is get up and bid adieu with a plate of hot waffles. It’s our family tradition that I am left with only Gaby (our dog) for a few days before New Year’s as the rest of the family heads to Tahoe to find powder and fun. Last year we broke tradition, and I went along and got really cozy at the ski lodge after a few painful runs on the beginner’s slope. This year, we’re back to our tried-and-true formula, and I’m staying behind while the snow demons board with abandon. And I’m sending them off on a full stomach of bungeoppang waffles.
So what’s bungeoppang? If you’ve ever had the great fun of strolling through a Korean supermarket, you may have noticed bread shaped like goldfish in the freezer section. Or if you are lucky enough to visit a market where side vendors are allowed, they are sold fresh off the griddle, steaming hot and delicious. Crispy on the outside, bungeoppang (Korean for fish bread, which is named for its shape not ingredients) is tender inside and usually filled with red bean paste. The crepe like batter is poured into griddles shaped like fish, filled with things like red bean paste or even custard as the batter is setting, and then cooked for a few minutes with the lid down. They are then fished out of the griddles with a metal hook, and it is all done in blinding speed.
I’m adapting a bungeoppang recipe from maangchi.com, and cooking the batter on my waffle iron. Of course, the waffles won’t be shaped like fish, but I thought a snowflake pattern would be a nice way to wish the family luck on the slopes.
If the waffle sticks–and if done right, it will–to the top of the of the waffle iron, gently pry off with a metal hook, or chopsticks, or tongs. Eat them immediately before they soften, or crisp them in a toaster for a minute if you forget to put on a pot of coffee before making the waffles.
Wishing you much joy and love in the New Year!
- (Adapted from maangchi.com)
- 1 c flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbs brown sugar
- 2 tbs vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 c plus 2 tbs water
- 8 tbs red bean paste (available in Asian markets)
- nonstick cooking spray or oil for brushing onto waffle iron
- waffle iron
- In a large bowl, sift the flour, salt, baking soda, brown sugar, and cinnamon.
- Add water and 2 tbs of vegetable oil to the dry ingredients. Whisk together until batter is smooth. (Batter is fairly thin.)
- Heat a waffle iron to medium high. Place it on a cooking sheet for easy cleanup.
- Either brush waffle iron with oil or lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray. (Spray both sides of iron.)
- To make snowflake waffle, spoon a small amount of batter into the center of waffle iron, letting the batter spread into a snowflake pattern. Spoon 1 tbs of red pean paste in the center of the batter, and press it down gently with a spoon. Cover the red bean paste with a small amount of batter, and close the lid.
- To make regular waffle shape, just ladle some batter into the waffle iron, place and press down 2 tbs of red bean paste in the center, cover paste with a little batter, and close the lid. The waffles are done in 1-2 minutes or until they are crispy on the outside.
- If waffle sticks to the top of iron, gently coax it off with tongs.
- Serve immediately or if making ahead, toast them for a minute before serving.