Friday, May 4, 2012

Chicken Tacos {Asian Style}

My office is in an awesome location, food wise. I’m 2 blocks from the ID (International District/China Town), which is full of amazing little lunch spots—all the pho, dumplings, sushi, and satay you could ask for. I’m also a stone’s throw from a number of great sandwich places and even better gyro joints, and I'm directly above the always fabulous Salumi.

But, regardless of all those awesome eateries, the one I get most excited about is only around on Fridays. I'm talkin’ tacos, people. Korean-Hawaiian fusion tacos, from the Marination Mobile food truck.

What is Korean-Hawaiian fusion, you ask? Only the most delicious flavor explosion to hit my mouth, that's all. Bulgogi beef or miso ginger chicken tacos, kalua pork sliders, and the most delicious item of all—don't judge—spam sliders. Seriously, you haven't lived until you've eaten a spam slider from Marination. They perform miracles inside that little restaurant on wheels.

Don't worry, I didn’t write a recipe for spam sliders. I'll leave that one to the experts. I did, however, perform a little fusion magic of my own, just in time for the biggest taco-eating day of the year. Sweet and spicy soy-soaked grilled chicken, meet the tortilla. You two will become great friends.  

Grilled Chicken Tacos, Asian Style
Set aside some time for the chicken to marinate, and for the cucumbers to soak up some goodness. At least two hours.

For Chicken
1 cup soy sauce
Splash olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
Squirt of Sriracha
Spoonful of hoison sauce
Pinch freshly grated ginger
Brown sugar
Black pepper
2 chicken breasts

Whisk together soy sauce through black pepper, taste and adjust as needed. You should have a pretty equal balance of spicy, salty, and sweet. Butterfly chicken so that you have 4 thin chicken breast pieces, and marinate in soy mixture for at least 2 hours—the longer the better.

Grill chicken on a medium-hot grill for a couple of minutes on both sides, until cooked all the way through (it should be thin enough that it cooks pretty quickly, but use your best judgment or meat thermometer… I like to cook a little longer until it’s a bit charred around the edges). Thinly slice.

For Sesame Sour Cream
½ cup sour cream
Sesame seed oil
Rice vinegar
Soy sauce

Start out with just a splash of sesame oil, vinegar, honey, sriracha, and soy, and whisk together with sour cream. Taste and add more of any item as needed.

For Tacos
Grilled chicken
Sesame sour cream
Small corn tortillas, warmed
Fresh greens (micro greens or pea shoots work great, but just lettuce works too)
Sesame seeds
Lime wedges

Assemble!  Start with your tortilla, slather on sesame sour cream, pile on the chicken, add a few cucumbers, toss on an assortment of greenery, a squirt of sriracha, and a shower of sesame seeds, and top with a squeeze of fresh lime juice.

Fold, eat, repeat.
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