Of course that main image is by none other than the City Foodsters while they were in Ginza Kojyu, Tokyo, JPN
Just know, “well done” and “Wagyu” should not be BFF’s, and these are some of the best ways on how to eat Wagyu just like the Japanese do.
If you do not have the luxury of eating at a restaurant with all these dishes, you can always buy Wagyu online and prepare them yourself. If that also sounds difficult, you have the pics to ogle over.
BTW, this is how you pronounce Wagyu (Japanese Beef)“Gorlami!”
It is “wa” “gyoo” (the Beatrix Kiddo way) as opposed to “wag” “you” (the Lt. Aldo Raines way).
All the Japanese Ways To Cook and Prepare Wagyu Beef
Once you get a slab of Wagyu, you will want to learn to prepare Wagyu properly, how to cook Wagyu beef, and ultimately the best ways to eat and prepare Wagyu in a variety of ways to heighten the experience.
1. Grilled Wagyu (Teppanyaki to Yakiniku)
To be specific, there is grilling on a teppanyaki (if you’re in the U.S., think Benihana), and then there is yakiniku (where you get to grill your meat to imperfection/perfection).
If you are a first-timer trying Wagyu, I would suggest trying it teppanyaki style first (prepared for you on a griddle).This style is common in Japan, but in the US, teppanyaki places are all about fiery volcanos.
- COOKING EQUIPMENT: grilled on a teppanyaki (iron griddle) or shichirin (charcoal/gas grille).
- PREPARATION: grilled rare to medium rare served typically with a side of shio (salt), ninniku (minced garlic), wasabi (grated Japanese horseradish), to a shoyu (soy sauce) dipping sauce.
2. Wagyu Shabu Shabu (Japanese Hot Pot)
Fat is flavor, but that heavily marbled, thinly sliced beef needs to be heated because when it is, the kombu-infused boiling water gives you one of the most natural ways to experience the texture and taste of wagyu.
Unlike the thicker cuts of Wagyu used for grilling, shabu shabu utilizes thinly sliced cuts that are “swished, swished” in a vegan broth that naturally enhances the flavors.“kombu contains iodine, which is important for thyroid function, iron, calcium, along with trace minerals. Kombu contains vitamins A & C as well.” – UMass Medical School
This style of preparation has got to be one of the most unadulterated ways of eating Wagyu, but beware if you are in the United States. In the states, there is an abundance of restaurateurs that will market their shabu shabu under the guise of hot pot.
- COOKING EQUIPMENT: either a pot or donabe (cast iron, copper, to ceramic) to a traditional shabu shabu pot (pictured above).
- PREPARATION: simply water and konbu, vegetables, tofu, and two dipping sauces which are either goma dare (sesame sauce) or ponzu (citrus soy sauce).
3. Wagyu Sukiyaki (Japanese Hot Pot)
If you like strong flavors (I am speaking to you Murica), you will love the combination of a sweet soy sauce broth with a mix of vegetables (did I just lose you my fellow Murican?) takes this wagyu dish to another level.
Welcome to flavor and texture town of melt in your mouth Wagyu plus a raw egg (the egg is optional) in a savory AF bite.Do not skip the egg because mucilage and a bukkake of slimy is under appreciated.
To try and cite one style of preparation as my favorite would be difficult, but when I take that first bite, it is a life changing one. The sweet, savory soy sauce based sauce with the fattiness of the Wagyu, a raw egg, and a hot bowl of rice is my come to Jeebus moment and when the Pastafarian spoke to me.
- COOKING EQUIPMENT: either a pot/donabe (cast iron, copper, to ceramic).
- PREPARATION: all prepared in “one pot” with a number of vegetables and ingredients stewed in a soy based broth. The meat and vegetables are then dipped in raw egg and eaten (the only legit sukiyaki recipe online in English is by Just One Cookbook).
4. Wagyu Katsu Sando (Japanese Sandwich)
This is one of those dishes that a Japanese came up with, Kentaro Nakahara’s of Sumibiyakiniku Nakahara. Once the dude did it, a million others followed suit from Tokyo, Los Angeles to New York, although out of them all, SakaMai is the one on a massive PR campaign to hype their $85 wagyu katsu sando.
Not the type of sammich your mama packed for you in your Charlies Angel’s lunch box (if she did I would have traded you a rice ball for your sandwich).That is not slices of Wonderbread, but Japanese shokupan (milk bread).
- COOKING EQUIPMENT: a deep-fryer.
- PREPARATION: soft and fluffy shokupan (Japanese bread) paired with a panko crusted wagyu that has been deep-fried to a medium rare finish.
5. Raw Wagyu (Beef Sashimi)
What do the Japanese not eat raw? So how could I not have it on this list because, in Japan, I have had all sorts of sashimi from fish, horse to chicken raw, which most Americans would be disgusted by or shocked from seeing on the menu. Except, I expect international folks to not be phased by it because in Europe, they have tartare to carpaccio, the Middle East kibbeh nayyeh, and in South America (ceviche).
Japanese Wagyu “melt’s in your mouth” because of the intramuscular fat (even without having to grill or torch it).Sing it “Ooh, baby, I like it raw, Yeah baby, I like it raw.”
- COOKING EQUIPMENT: I will let you figure this one out for yourself.
- PREPARATION: there are a number of ways to serve it raw which can range from eating it with sliced onions, minced garlic, minced ginger, and wasabi and soy sauce which can be used as a dipping sauce.
Once You Get Through This List, It Might Have You Feeling Like You are Turning Japanese
Beyond this list, there are other ways to experiment with Wagyu, such as experiencing the different cuts of Wagyu (short rib to tongue).
If that is not enough, there are also regional types of Wagyu in Japan, more than you can count, like olive fed Wagyu to trying the most notorious of Wagyu, Kobe beef, if you have not already tried it.