Whenever Becky is in town, she stays over at Casa Krystal. I love cooking dinner and surprising her with something tasty and new. However, there have been a couple of times where we dine out and we enjoy some tasty eats from my favorite restaurants. Becky and I have a love affair with Korean BBQ especially from a particular gourmet food truck from LA and the OC, Kogi BBQ. There have been a couple of times where we have enjoyed our fair share of fusion Korean-Mexican food and have driven crazy distances for a taco. I would love to re-create some of the specialty dishes, but Chef Roy Choi has at least over 30 ingredients in his special sauce.
This recipe is not a replica of Kogi BBQ, but a decent homemade offering of our favorite eats. This is for my bestie so she can hopefully have a taste of Korean BBQ whenever she wants at home, too. The key to this dish is the pickled cabbage and marinating the beef with the sauce. I chose to grill the tenderloin over the stove-top, but it can be easily be cooked on the grill for that extra smoky flavor. The sweet heat of the Korean-style marinade is absolutely savory and totally addicting.
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Korean-Style Beef Tacos
Adapted from Cooking Light June 2012
1/3 cup brown sugar
5 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons chile paste (such as sambal oelek)
1 teaspoon lime zest
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon sesame oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, sliced thinly
2 tablespoons olive oil
12 ounces tenderloin steak (or flank steak, skirt steak)
1/8 teaspoon salt
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
Quick Pickled Cabbage
3 tablespoons sliced green onions
In a large bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients and place the tenderloin steak to the dish. Cover and let marinate for at least 1 hour, making sure to turnover the meat after 30 minutes.
In a large Dutch oven (or large cooking pan), add the olive oil over medium-high heat. Saute the onions until translucent and tender, about 5 minutes. Add the tenderloin and marinade into the dutch oven. Reduce heat to a low and cover. Let meat cook for at least 45 minutes to 1 hour, until fully cooked, with a slight pink center if desired.
Remove tenderloin from pan and place on chopping board. Slice tenderloin into 1/2 inch strips and place back into the pan. Stir to combine with juices and chopped onions.
Grill tortillas about 30 seconds on each side. Add a small scoop of the meat and quick pickled cabbage on top. Garnish with green onions and add a bit of spicy Sriracha sauce for a little heat. Serve immediately.
Quick Pickled Cabbage:
Place 3 cups thinly sliced napa cabbage in medium bowl with 2 crushed cloves. Bring 1/2 cup rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 2 teaspoons chile paste to a boil. Pour hot mixture over cabbage; and toss. Let stand for at least 30 minutes.
Yield: 4 servings: 2 tacos each
Here's the bestie and I, and a collage of my recent visit to Kogi. Featured is a PacMan burger which features beef, pork, and chicken topped with sesame mayo, slaw, and jack and cheddar cheeses. And their signature short rib taco.
Extra Foodie Find: Here's one recipe that I have been able to locate from Roy Choi, Kogi Dogs.