i am channeling so much rainbow sponge lady energy into this korean street snack right now .OH MY GOSH, LOOK AT THAT, I'M CRYING, UGH, YES. my friends, introducing to you, baklava hotteok!
growing up, hotteok was a sign that indicated that we had both run out of costco muffins and croissants and that my mom was in a deep rush to get ready for golf or volunteering in the die-cutting/laminating room at school. there was no time to slather cream cheese on a bagel or put frozen fruit into a blender and pour it into a cup. a sure pass on cereal because there were 0 minutes to spare to watch your kids eat cereal, not even in to-go cups. hotteok was the winner because it was easier to heat up than a toaster streudel, and no clean up required! she would take these frozen disks, toss them into a toaster, wrap them in a paper towel and off we zipped to school.
these hotteok mornings were simply the best to me because they happened less often than i wished. i'd close my eyes in the car and imagine myself in an alternate universe sitting atop an enchanted chariot made of hotteoks floating down a path paved in glimmering cinnamon sugar. this is what warm, doughy, oozy, sweetness will do to a carb loving kid.
ok and now, imagine as a college student, you paid a visit to seattle for the first time and stumbled into a turkish food that had the best baklava you had in your entire existence. it wasn't that soggy syrupy mess that you had from that chain greek restaurant in your neighborhood plaza. this baklava was rather crisp, airy, and flowing with a floraly, sweet, nutty goodness that changed your understanding of baklava forever.
ok and now, imagine that these two magnificent experiences gave birth to a love child. that is this baklava hotteok! it's elevating that everyday economical (but still delightful) hotteok by serving it on a lace doily with rose cut outs (not a paper towel), and topping it off with some lux creamy cinnamony pistachios....
i spun this up for the first time with one of my closest gal pals, kristina, who visited me in brooklyn last weekend. we've been in a long distance friendship since graduating college, so we spent a lot of time catch up about everything under the sun, including how we're balancing-ish time between career and hobbies. if you want in on this conversation, she actually recorded it for her youtube channel that you can catch here. these moments make me wish that we could live in the same city together again, but she and i are both hardcore #careerwomaning and #passionprojecting in our respective cities so c'est la vie. i'm sending self-concerned prayers that she'll one day join me in brooklyn! :)
so back to making hotteok with kristina - we weren't able to contain all the filling inside the dough, and you shouldn't be too concerned about making it perfect either because it's actually a blessing in disguise! you might even want some sugar to ooze out because it forms this caramelized deliciousness to the edges. you'll be like. omg, it's oozing, look at that, ugh YESSSS. baklaavaaa hottteeeokkkk.
1 1/4 cup bread flour
3/4 cup rice flour
1/2 packet of dried yeast (4 grams)
1 tsp salt
1 cup warm water
1 tbs olive oil
1/2 cup of roughly chopped or ground pistachio
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup cane sugar
1 tbs sesame seeds
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/2 tablespoon lemon zest
2 1/2 tablespoon rose water
in a large mixing bowl, combine all dry dough ingredients and mix evenly
slowly pour in 1/2 cup of warm water into bowl and incorporate into dry ingredients. knead with hands, add oil, and pour in remainder of water
knead for 4-5 minutes until flour and water are evenly incorporated to make a dough
cover bowl with saran wrap and set aside for 1 hour. dough should rise and double in size!
while waiting for dough to rise, combine all filling ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until evenly mixed
lightly dust your work station with a little bread flour
once dough has doubled in size, use your hands to scrape dough out of bowl and onto your work station
knead the air out of the dough for 2 minutes and split dough into half, then half the halves until you have sixteen pieces of dough. roll all sixteen into ball shapes
take one ball and stretch out from the center and flatten until it's roughly the size of your hand. be sure that it's not stretched toooo thin
scoop 1/2 tablespoon of filling into center of dough, pull the edges of the dough up, pinch together to form a ball
repeat step 5 for all the ballllls
in a medium sized frying pan or griddle, brush with olive oil and heat up to a medium high
place 2-3 balls on pan and try to flatten the ball using a spatula or the bottom of a bowl brushed with oil as much as possible. if pressing down too hard, you may lose all the filling so be careful here! it's okay for some sugar to ooze out, but not all of it!
flip after 4-5 minutes once the bottoms have browned, and cook for another 2-3 minutes
remove from pan, set aside to cool, top with ground pistachio and enjoy with some good black coffee!