Sunday, May 23, 2010


Couple days ago our lab had a farewell party for a visiting researcher who is going back to his country next week. Then, as one of the menu, my lab mates made chijimi, or savory vegetable pancake. Chijimi itself is a Japanese name for this Korean dish that originally named as "jijim". I happened to have a Korean friend who actually introduced me to this pancake. However, it turns out that people in Okinawa island of Japan also have the similar dish with a different name, which I completely forgot what it is. Will ask them again next Monday :p
Anyway, frequently compared with Japanese okonomiyaki (also vegetable pancake with a slice of pork on top) that mostly use cabbage for the fillers, chijimi uses nira instead. Also, speaking of size,chijimi is much thinner than okonomiyaki.
Another important ingredients for chijimi is sesame oil. First time I made my chijimi, I`ve forgotten this sesame oil and it just went wrong. I mean, on my personal taste, it will never be chijimi without sesame oil :p

So, here is the recipe for chijimi batter:
- 200 g cake flour
- 250 ml water
- 1 egg
- salt and pepper
Mix them all then you`ll notice that the batter has a light consistency. Chijimi is supposed to be thin and crispy on the edge.
Then, for the filler, you can add any vegetables, fish, or even meat as you like, but here is what I chose:
- Nira
- Leeks
- Maitake mushroom
- Dried shrimps
- Squids
- Fried tofu strips
Everything is chopped, except for nira. I cut it into 5 cm pieces because I love the big chunks of nira in chijimi.

After your chijimi mix is ready, heat your frying pan (mine was 18 cm in diameter) with few drops of olive oil. Some recipes recommend to keep the batter for 4 hours or so in refrigerator to get a better result. But I was  too hungry to wait so I just continued with the frying and it worked just fine.
Spread your mix on the pan as thin as possible
When one side of the chijimi starts to get dry, add sesame oil surrounding it, then flip it to get the other side cooked.

When both sides are golden brown with crispy look, your chijimi is ready.

Now for the dipping:
- Soy sauce
- Fish sauce
- Sesame oil
- Chili powder (or not, if spicy food isn`t your thing)

Cut your chijimi into slices then dip it to the sauce. Yummmmyyy!!!