The Korea Herald


Yakgwa (deep-fried honey cookies)

By Korea Herald

Published : Aug. 10, 2012 - 19:30

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Yakgwa (Institute of Traditional Korean Food) Yakgwa (Institute of Traditional Korean Food)
Yakgwa is a type of cookie made by kneading wheat flour with sesame oil, honey and refined rice wine. It is pressed into a square mold, or flattened with a mallet and cut into a square. It is then fried in oil and dipped in honey. This is the most luxurious and tasteful traditional Korean cookie. It is served on festive days, at ceremonial feasts and memorial services.


● 1 cup and 8 tbsp wheat flour (medium viscidness), 2 tbsp sesame oil

● Honey cookie seasoning: 2 tbsp honey, 2 tbsp refined rice wine, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tbsp ginger juice, 0.1 g ground white pepper, 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder

● Honey syrup: 1 cup honey, 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder

● 1 tbsp pine nuts, 2 jujube, 2 g pumpkin seeds

● 4 cups edible oil

1. Sieve wheat flour, mix with the sesame oil thoroughly and sieve again.

2. Add seasoning to the wheat flour, mix thoroughly and knead it softly as if making a snowball.

3. Roll the dough flat, fold over three times, roll and fold again. Finally roll it down to 0.5 cm-thick, cut it into 3.5 cm squares and make 5~6 holes with a chopstick.

4. Blend honey and cinnamon.

5. Remove tops of the pine nuts and them and the pumpkin seeds clean. Wipe jujube and cut it into a flower shape.

6. Pour edible oil into the pan and heat it up for 5 min. on medium heat. When oil temperature reaches 85-90˚C, fry the cookie dough for 15 min. When the dough floats on the surface, put the heat on full. When oil temperature reaches 140-145˚C, fry it for another 10 min. until both sides turn brown.

7. Drain on a strainer for 5-10 min, dip in honey syrup for 5-6 hours, and put them on a strainer again for 2 hours.

8. Garnish with pine nuts, jujube and pumpkin seeds.


Do not knead too strongly. Soft kneading will make the cookies non-sticky and crispy.

Citron syrup may be added into the honey syrup according to taste.

(Adapted from the Institute of Traditional Korean Food)