It looks like corned beef and it tastes like Tapa! Rodic’s-Style Chopped Beef Tapa is a copycat dish from the well-known Diner, Rodic’s, made with flaked beef marinated in tapa style sauces and spices.
I studied in the University where this popular diner is located, University of the Philippines, Diliman, but during my time I am pretty sure that Rodic’s was not yet exiting, I may be wrong but I never had seen this place during the 90’s. During those years the popular one was the Beach House beside the Sunken Garden, its famous pork barbecue has been sold since the 80’s but that’s for another story. Today we will be focusing more on Rodic’s and their tapa which is quite unique.
Tapa in the Philippines is usually made with thinly sliced or chunky cubes of beef marinated in soy sauce and garlic then pan fried, the one served at Rodics while marinade are similar, they are flaked to the point it sometimes looks like ground meat. I guess they just solved the issue of chewy cheap cuts of beef used on tapa, so instead of tirelessly munching the cheap cuts of beef endlessly, they are flaked to enhance the eating experience and mask the fact that beef used on these sorts of dishes are the affordable variant. Don’t get me wrong cheap cuts are not bad, actually most of them are tastier than the expensive cuts, the problem is that they are just too tough, so preparation is the key to achieve the best results.
I have not tried Rodics like many of our copycat recipes, but I think this one is the easiest one to copy as all Filipinos know how tapa tastes like, what only differs it the cooking process to make it flaked. The result is that they look like corned beef but with the colour and taste of tapa. Did I like it? Well, I have mixed emotions about it because I am one of those few ones that love chewing on not so tender beef, I just love that texture once in a while. So yes, I still prefer the traditional one, but I also love this specially when I am in a hurry or if it is served on the lunch box, making the eating experience better.