Cycle 3 – Item 294
25 (Thu) October 2012
from Okdol Barbecue
-Oksu, Seongdong, Seoul, Republic of Korea-
This kind of set-up is a common if random and sporadic thing, trucks showing up on street corners every so often, maybe like once a month (presumably, they rotate through other locations the rest of the month). The chickens are roasted from the truck bed in an electric rotisserie, which is equipped with a glass door to provide passersby with a clear view of the goods. Each bird is relatively small, about the size of a baby broiler, maybe 500 grams (about 1 lb.) at most. The seasoning is simple: salt and pepper and a few additional spices, nothing too radical. Ideally, the skin is crisp, while the meat is juicy within. 3 chickens for 10,000 won or 4,000 for 1. This type of set-up has been around for several years, the prices keeping remarkably steady despite rises food costs and general inflation. Skeptics insist that the low prices are possible only because the chickens are suspect in some way, like they’d died young from disease. Maybe. But until I know for sure, I’ll continue to take advantage of the deal whenever I see it.
Incidentally, the “okdol” literally means “jade stone,” perhaps in reference to an old style of cooking chicken (?), and the “tongdak” means “whole chicken.
(See also GLOBAL FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN KOREA)