The Korea Herald


[Holly’s Korean Kitchen] Gamja bokkeum, Korean panfried potato

By Korea Herald

Published : July 2, 2022 - 16:01

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Gamja bokkeum, Korean panfried potato (Holly Ford) Gamja bokkeum, Korean panfried potato (Holly Ford)

If you visit a Korean home for a home-cooked meal, you’ll be amazed at the variety of delicious Korean side dishes served along with the main course.

This Korean potato stir-fry (gamja bokkeum) is one that you’ll see pretty often, and it is one dish that I adore.

Gamja bokkeum is a simple Korean stir-fried or panfried potato side dish, or banchan. It’s a gluten-free side dish and perfect for vegetarians and vegans.

You can stir-fry the potato alone or with other vegetables. Some even add a few strips of ham to make it heartier.

I like mine with whatever simple vegetables I have on hand, usually onion and carrot. The vegetables dress up the plain potato -- I like things pretty, even with a boring potato.


- 2 medium Yukon potatoes, or 1 large russet potato

- 1 tbsp oil

- 1 clove garlic, minced

- salt to taste

- pepper to taste

- 2 tsp toasted sesame seeds


1. Peel off the skin from the potato. Slice a small piece off the side of the potato. This will provide a flat surface for the potato to stand firmly without being wobbly when you slice it.

2. Cut the potato into about 3 millimeter slices. Spread the potato slices out like a deck of cards, overlapping with each other, and slice them into 3 mm strips. Again, slightly thicker or thinner strips are just fine.

3. Rinse the potato strips under cold running water several times to get rid of the starchiness. Drain the potato in a colander to strain excess water.

4. Heat oil in a non-stick surface skillet over medium heat, add garlic and stir-fry for 10 seconds. Add the potato strips and coat with garlic oil. Stir-fry for 1 minute. Cover the skillet with a lid and let it simmer for 2 minutes over low heat.

5. Raise the heat to medium. Add the thinly sliced onion, carrot, and green onion and continue to stir-fry as you season with some salt. Cook until the potatoes are crisp but tender, about 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to stir-fry too harshly, though. You don’t want to break the potato strips.

6. Lastly sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

By Holly Ford (


Hye-gyoung Ford (aka Holly) is a well-known Korean food blogger and the author of “Korean Cooking Favorites.” Born and raised in Korea, she has lived in many countries. She shares her recipes and food memories in her blog, Beyond Kimchee. - Ed.