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Photograph: Brendan LekanSikia

Six restaurants to get your goat


Birrieria Zaragoza Thick handmade tortillas, salsas made to order in molcajates, cinnamon-laced coffee. You can get all of that here. Their only purpose, however, is to accompany this restaurant’s signature platters of chopped goat meat. As opposed to other birrierias, this goat doesn’t touch a consommé until it’s plated, when some of the tomato-based broth is spooned over it. At that point, a good dousing of the restaurant’s intricate hot sauce, and maybe a squeeze of lime and some onions, is all you need for one of the city’s best goat tacos. 4852 S Pulaski Rd (773-523-3700). El: Orange to Pulaski. Bus: 47, 53A, 62. Breakfast, lunch, dinner (Mon–Sat), brunch (Sun). Average main course: $8.

Cumin Chef Min Thapa is a master of Nepalese cooking, and here he proves it with a bevy of goat dishes. Start your meal with bhutuwa, goat flash-cooked with bell peppers, green chiles, onions and flattened rice. For your entrée, try gorkhali khasi, a spicy stew featuring chunks of bone-in goat meat, or order goat biryani off the Indian side of the menu. The only thing missing is a goat dessert. 1414 N Milwaukee Ave (773-342-1414). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Lunch, dinner. Average main course: $14.

Curry Hut North suburban diners can skip the trek to Devon Avenue and settle into this comfy spot. Thanks to an owner who hails from Nepal, the standard Indian menu also offers a handful of Nepalese specialties including chhoela, goat roasted in a clay oven and marinated with garlic, ginger and Himalayan spices. There’s also a mild braised goat in tomato-based curry, a welcome respite from the tongue-scorching vindaloo dishes. Get the best bang for your buck when you try the goat curry during the all-you-can-eat lunch buffet, available every day for just $9.95. 410 Sheridan Rd, Highwood (847-432-2889). Lunch, dinner. Average main course: $12.

Iyanze African restaurants are well known for their leisurely pace, but here the mother-and-son team behind Bolat go the exact opposite route: Customers place their orders at a counter, get in line at a buffet and watch as their food goes from steam table to plate in a matter of minutes. Technically, that makes this stuff fast food, but the flavors are clearly the result of slow cooking: The goat meat has seemingly endless layers of hot and mild peppers. 4623 N Broadway (773-944-1417). El: Red to Wilson. Bus: 36, 78, 145. Lunch, dinner. Average main course: $5.

La Quebrada Specializing in dishes from the Mexican coastal state of Guerrero, this spot lays out many seafood options, but meat is always center stage. One of the best meat options is goat barbacoa, served as savory, tender chunks. The charbroiled skirt steak is coated with cheese and salsa, making for a gooey, tasty dish. If you BYOB, you may be asked for an ID and receipt to prove you paid for your poison. 4859 W Roosevelt Rd, Cicero (708-780-8110). El: Blue (Forest Park) to Cicero. Bus: 12, 54. Breakfast, lunch, dinner. Average main course: $12.

Sikia This may be a venue in which Washburne Culinary Institute students can hone their skills, but it doesn’t look, feel or taste like a student project. Just as the slick, contemporary dining room is accented with African touches, so, too, is the dinner menu: A nuanced African goat and ground nut stew gives the low-calorie meat a rich and creamy texture. 740 W 63rd St (773-602-5200). El: Green to Halsted. Bus: 8, 63. Brunch (Sun) (Dinner service will resume in September.) Average main course: $12.

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