Easy Zucchini Scallion Pancakes Recipe: Tips & Serving Ideas

We’ve all been there, staring at the zucchini in our fridge, wondering how to turn it into something exciting. Well, wonder no more! We’re diving into the world of zucchini scallion pancakes, a dish that promises to transform the humble zucchini into a mouthwatering masterpiece. Originating from a creative twist on traditional scallion pancakes, this recipe brings together the freshness of zucchini with the bold flavors of scallions, creating a perfect harmony in every bite.

These pancakes are not just about the flavors; they’re a celebration of texture and versatility. Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, and packed with nutrients, they’re ideal for breakfast, a side dish, or even a savory snack. And the best part? They’re incredibly easy to whip up, making them perfect for those busy weeknights or when you’re looking to impress guests without the fuss. So let’s grab our aprons and dive into the delicious world of zucchini scallion pancakes.

Ingredients

Diving into the heart of our culinary adventure, we’re excited to share the simple yet flavorful ingredients that will bring our zucchini scallion pancakes to life. Let’s embark on this savory journey together.

For the Zucchini Scallion Pancakes

  • 2 cups grated zucchini (about 2 medium zucchinis)
  • 1 teaspoon salt, to draw water from the zucchini
  • 3 finely chopped scallions, green and white parts
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (optional, for garnish)
  • Fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley, for garnish

For the Dipping Sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped scallion
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes, for heat (optional)

Equipment Needed

Now that we’ve covered what you’ll be needing in terms of ingredients for your delicious zucchini scallion pancakes and the accompanying dipping sauce, let’s move on to the tools that will help you bring this dish to life. The right equipment can make the preparation process smoother and ensure your pancakes come out perfectly crispy and golden every time.

  • Large Mixing Bowl: To combine your grated zucchini, scallions, eggs, flour, and seasonings into a cohesive pancake batter.
  • Colander: Essential for draining the excess moisture from your grated zucchini, ensuring your pancakes are not soggy.
  • Clean Kitchen Towel or Cheesecloth: After draining, you’ll need to squeeze out any remaining moisture from the zucchini. A kitchen towel or cheesecloth works wonders for this step.
  • Grater: Preferably a box grater, for grating your zucchini. The medium holes are perfect for the right texture.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: Accuracy matters when it comes to the components of your pancake batter and dipping sauce. These ensure you get the balance of flavors just right.
  • Skillet or Non-stick Pan: A must-have for cooking your pancakes to achieve that ideal crisp edge and tender center. A non-stick surface also means you can use less oil, making your pancakes healthier.
  • Spatula: For flipping your pancakes safely and efficiently, ensuring they keep their shape and cook evenly on both sides.
  • Whisk or Fork: To beat the eggs into your pancake mixture and blend the dipping sauce ingredients smoothly.
  • Mixing Spoon: To stir your pancake batter, ensuring all ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Serving Plate: Ready to receive your freshly cooked zucchini scallion pancakes, keeping them warm until ready to serve.
  • Small Bowl: For mixing and serving your dipping sauce alongside the pancakes.

With these tools at your disposal, you’re all set to tackle this recipe head-on. Remember, cooking is not just about following instructions but enjoying the process of creating something delightful from scratch. So, gather your equipment, and let’s get started on making those zucchini scallion pancakes that are sure to impress.

Prep Work

Before diving into the cooking, let’s get our ingredients ready. This process will ensure a smooth and enjoyable cooking experience.

Shredding the Zucchini

To start, wash your zucchini thoroughly under running water. Pat them dry with a clean towel. Using a grater, shred the zucchini into fine pieces. You’ll want to measure out about 2 cups of shredded zucchini for our recipe. Once shredded, transfer the zucchini into a colander and sprinkle it with a little salt. The salt will help draw out excess moisture. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, then squeeze out as much water as you can. This step is crucial for achieving those crispy edges we all love in our pancakes.

Chopping the Scallions

Next, we’ll prep the scallions. Rinse them under cold water and pat dry. With a sharp knife, thinly slice both the white and the green parts of the scallions until you have about a half cup. Chopping them thinly will ensure they blend well into the pancake batter without overpowering the other flavors. Remember to save a few slices for garnishing the pancakes before serving.

Making the Pancake Batter

Now that our zucchini is perfectly shredded and our scallions finely chopped, let’s move on to the heart of the dish – creating the pancake batter that binds all our ingredients together into delicious, golden-brown pancakes.

Mixing Dry Ingredients

To start, we’ll mix our dry ingredients in a large bowl. You’ll need:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine these ingredients thoroughly with a whisk to ensure our pancakes have a light, airy texture. This mixture will serve as the foundation for our batter, providing structure to hold all our wonderful ingredients together.

Incorporating Wet Ingredients

With our dry base ready, it’s time to add the wet ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup ice-cold water
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

First, beat the eggs in a separate bowl. Once they’re nicely beaten, incorporate the ice-cold water and soy sauce, stirring to combine. The cold water helps to keep the batter light and crispy once cooked. Gently pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients bowl. Stir the mixture until just combined, being careful not to overmix. Some lumps are perfectly fine and even desired for texture.

Fold in the shredded zucchini and chopped scallions into the batter. This step marries all our prepped ingredients with the batter, ensuring every pancake is packed with flavor and nutrients. You’ve now crafted a pancake batter that promises to deliver crispiness on the outside and tenderness on the inside, making each bite a delightful experience.

Cooking the Pancakes

Now that our batter is ready, it’s time to cook these delightful zucchini scallion pancakes to golden perfection. We’re aiming for a crispy exterior with a tender interior, and here’s how we’ll achieve it.

Preparing the Pan

Before we begin, let’s set up our cooking station for success. We’ll need a large, non-stick skillet or griddle—something that distributes heat evenly is key. Place it on your stove over medium heat and let it warm up for a minute or two. You’ll know it’s ready when a few drops of water sizzle upon contact. Once it’s adequately heated, add a thin layer of vegetable oil to coat the surface of the pan. This helps in achieving that irresistible crispy edge we’re aiming for. If you have an oil brush, use it to evenly spread the oil. Alternatively, a paper towel held with tongs will do the trick. The right amount of oil is crucial—not too much, as we’re not deep-frying, but enough to prevent sticking and to crisp the pancakes.

Cooking in Batches

With our pan prepared and at the optimal temperature, it’s time to start cooking. Spoon about a quarter cup of batter for each pancake into the pan, gently flattening it with the back of the spoon to form a round shape. Be mindful not to overcrowd the pan; leaving space between each pancake is essential for even cooking and makes flipping them easier.

Cook each pancake for about 3 to 4 minutes on one side, until you notice the edges start to brown and the bottom has formed a crispy, golden layer. This is where patience pays off—wait for the perfect moment to flip. Once flipped, cook for another 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. The second side cooks faster since the pancake is already heated through, so keep an eye on it.

Transferring the cooked pancakes to a wire rack or a plate lined with paper towels will help to keep them crispy. If working in batches, which you likely will be given the pan size, you can keep the cooked pancakes warm in an oven set to a low temperature while you finish the rest.

Repeat the process with the remaining batter, adjusting the heat if necessary and adding more oil between batches if the pan looks dry. This ensures each pancake is as perfect as the one before.

Preparing the Dipping Sauce

After transferring the crispy pancakes to a serving plate, it’s time to whisk together a savory dipping sauce that complements them beautifully. This sauce enhances the flavors of the zucchini scallion pancakes, adding a layer of richness and tang. Let’s dive into the simple steps to create this flavorful addition.

Ingredients for the Dipping Sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey or sugar (according to taste)
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped scallions
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes (optional for heat)
  1. Combine Liquid Ingredients: In a small bowl, start by combining the soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sesame oil. These form the base of our sauce, providing a balance of salty, tart, and umami flavors.
  2. Add Sweetness: Stir in the honey or sugar. Adjust the amount based on your preference for sweetness. This ingredient helps to balance the saltiness of the soy sauce and the acidity of the vinegar.
  3. Incorporate Aromatics: Add the minced garlic and grated ginger to the mix. Both garlic and ginger introduce a burst of flavors that are aromatic and slightly spicy, which pairs wonderfully with the base of our sauce.
  4. Enhance with Scallions: Sprinkle in the finely chopped scallions. This not only adds a mild oniony crunch but also brings freshness to the overall profile of the sauce.
  5. Adjust Heat: If you’re up for a bit of heat, a pinch of red pepper flakes can be the perfect addition. This is optional but recommended for those who enjoy a spicy kick.
  6. Whisk Together: Once all the ingredients are in the bowl, whisk them thoroughly until well combined. Ensure the honey or sugar is completely dissolved into the mixture.
  7. Tasting and Adjusting: Taste your dipping sauce and adjust any of the components according to your preferences. More honey can be added for sweetness, or a bit more soy sauce for saltiness.
  8. Serving: Transfer the sauce to a small serving bowl or individual dipping dishes. It’s ready to be served alongside your zucchini scallion pancakes.

Serving Suggestions

After mastering the art of crafting these zucchini scallion pancakes and their savory dipping sauce, the next step is to serve them in a way that heightens the pleasure of eating them. We love pairing these pancakes with a variety of sides and garnishes to elevate the dining experience.

Firstly, consider placing the pancakes on a serving platter, drizzling a bit of the savory dipping sauce over them, and sprinkling a handful of freshly chopped scallions for an added burst of freshness. This method not only enhances the flavors but also makes the dish visually appealing.

For a more substantial meal, pair the pancakes with a side of jasmine or sticky rice. The mild flavor of the rice complements the rich taste of the pancakes and the dipping sauce, creating a perfectly balanced meal.

Incorporating a protein can transform these pancakes into a hearty dinner option. Grilled chicken, shrimp, or tofu seasoned with a touch of soy sauce and garlic pairs wonderfully with the pancakes and can be served alongside or on top for a complete meal.

A refreshing cucumber salad also makes an excellent side dish. Slice cucumbers thinly, toss them with a bit of rice vinegar, honey, salt, and sesame seeds. This salad brings a crisp, cooling contrast to the warm, savory pancakes.

Lastly, don’t forget a cup of hot green tea to wash it all down. The subtle astringency of the tea is a perfect palate cleanser, making each bite of pancake as enjoyable as the first.

Make-Ahead and Storage Tips

To ensure your zucchini scallion pancakes stay deliciously crisp and fresh, we’re sharing some essential make-ahead and storage tips. These strategies will help you enjoy your pancakes with minimal fuss, whether you’re prepping in advance or saving leftovers.

Make-Ahead Instructions

For those busy days when you still want a home-cooked meal, preparing the batter for zucchini scallion pancakes in advance is a game-changer. Simply mix the grated zucchini, scallions, flour, eggs, and seasoning as directed in our recipe. Store this batter covered in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to cook, give the batter a good stir as some separation may occur. This not only saves you prep time but also allows the flavors to meld together beautifully, resulting in even tastier pancakes.

Storage Instructions

Leftover zucchini scallion pancakes are a treat you won’t want to waste. Here’s how to store them properly so you can enjoy their flavor and texture later on. First, let the pancakes cool to room temperature to prevent moisture build-up which can lead to sogginess. Once cooled, place the pancakes in an airtight container, separating each pancake with parchment paper to prevent sticking. These can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply warm them in a pan over medium heat until they’re crispy again. For longer storage, freeze the pancakes on a baking sheet, then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag or container for up to 2 months. Reheat directly from frozen in a pan or oven for a quick and satisfying meal or snack.

Conclusion

We’ve walked through the delightful journey of making zucchini scallion pancakes, from whipping up the batter to savoring these crispy delights with the perfect accompaniments. With our tips on making ahead and storing, we’re confident you’ll find these pancakes not just a treat for the taste buds but also a breeze to prepare, even on your busiest days. So, let’s get cooking and make every meal a little more special with these savory pancakes. Here’s to enjoying homemade goodness with less stress and more flavor!

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