Korean BBQ Tacos

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Chicago seems to be suggesting we’re headed toward warmer times (although those thunderstorms and annoying snow flurries certainly played games with Miss Fats).  And what that means for Miss Fats’ appetite is nothing but tasty ethnic food cravings.  Come sunshine, she can’t get enough Thai noodles, crunchy Vietnamese spring rolls, or spicy tacos.  Yet one particular flavor has been on Miss Fats’ mind (and taste buds) lately: Korean BBQ.  For some reason, nothing sounds better than that sweet salty sauce and spicy kimchee.

One of Miss Fats’ favorite food discoveries since moving to the Midwest are the Korean Tacos at Del Seoul (this genius trend had not yet reached Seattle. Confusing.)  Unfortunately those crazy delicious shrimp tacos are damn far from Hyde Park, so Miss Fats was determined to recreate some of their goodness at home.  After a bit of research and picking up only one ethnic ingredient (might be two for you!), Miss Fats has created her homage to the Korean taco.

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This meat marinade is so easy and works for any cut of meat that you just want to cook the shit out of.  So far, Miss Fats has tried this with a whole chicken (which she quartered) and a hunk of pork roast.  Both were crazy good.  The BBQ sauce is deadly: you just want to suck it up with a straw.  And you can easily just make the sauce and throw it on any left over meat you might have lying around.

Korean BBQ Tacos and Asian Slaw:
BBQ sauce reproduced from Steamy Kitchen’s Kogi BBQ Sauce

marinade:
meat of choice (1 whole chicken, 3 lbs of pork roast, etc)
3 tbs soy sauce
2 tbs sriracha
2 tbs sake (or you can use any rice wine or increase the rice vinegar to 3 tbs)
1 tbs rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
4 cloves garlic peeled
1 inch ginger, peeled and sliced
water

bbq sauce:
2 tbs Korean fermented hot pepper paste (gochujang) (Miss Fats found this pretty easily at an Asian grocery store in Chinatown)
3 tbs sugar
2 tbs soy sauce
2 tsp rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1/8 tsp msg (totally optional.  Miss Fats has now tried it with or without: both times it was delicious.  The MSG just adds that little extra flavor that makes the sauce as addictive as those cold chow mein noodles sitting in your fridge.)

slaw:
1/2 english cucumber, thinly sliced
4 large radishes, thinly sliced
1 carrot, julienned or shredded
1 cup shredded napa cabbage
1/4 cup sliced green onion
2 tbs rice vinegar
pinch of salt
sesame seeds (optional)

corn tortillas
sriracha (optional)
kimchee (optional)

1. night before: make the marinade.  In your slow cooker base (or another bowl if your cooker doesn’t disassemble), mix all the marinade ingredients together except for the water.  Throw your meat down and pour enough water to cover everything.  Refrigerate over night.

2. morning: cook everything for approximately 8 hours on low (or 4 hours on high) (this will really depend on your meat and how much you’re cooking), until the meat is falling apart.

3. make the slaw (this can easily be done ahead of time): toss all the ingredients into a bowl and mix.  The longer you refrigerate this, the more pickle-like it will become: yum yum.

4. make the sauce.  Mix together all the BBQ sauce ingredients in a bowl big enough to hold all your tasty cooked meat.  Remove your meat from the slow cooker and shred whatever animal you’ve prepared.  Toss in all that salty sweet goodness.

To assemble these guys Miss Fats throws down a steamed corn tortilla (just put ‘em in the microwave for 1 minute with a wet paper towel underneath), a healthy portion of shredded meat, and a mound of crunchy slaw.  Then (of course) a drizzle of sriracha is needed with a side of spicy kimchee for “palate cleansing.”

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Miss Fats hopes you enjoy these weird ethnic monster tacos.  Too bad if you think a corn tortilla can’t be a vehicle for salty sweet asian bbq tasty times: you’re wrong.  But seriously: get out there and try these.  Guaranteed addition.

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