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Recipe | June 20 2022

A lot of dishes I do have a history or narrative component to them. With this surf ‘n’ turf coulotte (or rump cap), I’m having a dig at the Aussie idea of ‘shrimps on the barbie’. Having said that, rather than barbecuing the shrimp, I cook them in rendered wagyu fat with five types of chilli. That’s the ‘angry’ bit!

But way before we get to that, I’ll be aging the coulotte in kombu sheets for seven days. The natural salt in the kombu starts to break the meat down, giving it a lot of depth and character and accentuating that surf ‘n’ turf element. When it’s time to cook, the wagyu is roasted in the kombu too: the fat will render off and while the meat is resting, I’ll use the fat to cook the shrimp. The kombu adds salinity to the meat and also the fat: there’s this real umami depth and another level of oceanic quality.

Chris Cosentino is the Head Chef at Acacia House in the Napa Valley

Serves: 4-6
Time: 2 hours 45 minutes, plus 7 days aging


Ingredients 

Dry-Aged Coulotte

1 x 2.3kg / 5lb Westholme coulotte (also called rump cap or picanha)
1 kombu sheet
28g Red Boat salt
9 head-on shrimp (size U10)
Angry Sauce (see below)
20g garlic, sliced
Little gem leaves
32g mint leaves

Angry Sauce

1 red onion, chopped
3 Fresno chillies, chopped
1 serrano chillies, chopped
3 sweet chillies, dried
3 cayenne chillies, dried
2 cascabel chillies
235g olive oil
10g molasses
31g cassis vinegar
20g kosher salt
5g ground black pepper

METHOD 

  1. Trim excess fat from the fat cap then score to create a crosshatch. Remove the silverskin from the meat side.
  2. Wrap the whole coulotte in a sheet of kombu and tie with butcher’s twine. Leave in the refrigerator for 7-14 days with appropriate room to breathe. This will change the complexity of the wagyu and add a lot to the ‘surf and turf’ part of this dish.
  3. When it’s time to roast, remove meat from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature for 45 minutes. Unwrap and season the meat with Red Boat salt then rewrap with kombu and tie with butcher’s twine. Preheat oven to 230C/450F.
  4. While the meat is coming to temperature, split the back of the shrimp leaving the shells on and removing the poop vein. Wearing gloves, marinate shrimp in the Angry Sauce (see below), slathering the shrimp.
  5. Place the kombu-wrapped coulotte in a sauté pan and place in the preheated oven until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the meat hits 43C/110F. Remove from oven. Leave wrapped in kombu to carry-over cook for about 15 minutes. This will bring the internal temperature to about 52C/125F after resting, which will be a perfect temperature for sharing this roast. There will be a gradual difference in textures and temperature throughout the coulotte.
  6. While the meat is resting, grill the shrimp on the barbie making sure not to overcook.
  7. At the same time, place the fat from the coulotte in a saute pan with the garlic and mint, blistering and blooming the flavour. Add the little gem leaves, sauteing fast and being sure to not overcook.
  8. To serve, remove the meat from the kombu, slice the meat and place on a platter. Dress with Angry Sauce. Place the shrimp next to it and the little gems on the platter for folks to take and make their own plates.

Angry Sauce

  1. Remove stems from dried chillies and rehydrate them in hot water.
  2. In a blender, add chopped fresh chillies and onions with half the oil and half the rehydrated chillies. Blend until smooth and transfer to a mixing bowl.
  3. Repeat this process with the rest of the chillies and oil, add the molasses and vinegar and blend until smooth.
  4. Transfer to the mixing bowl; add salt and pepper to season. Stir through. Keep refrigerated. 


Recipe | June 14 2022

This is a dish where I think about the cow and its grazing. When you look at cattle, when they’re raised in the right environment, there’s usually some form of water around and where there’s a stream, there’s watercress and where there’s watercress, there’s snails. And what does the cow do? It trots right over, drinks the water and grazes on the cress and you know what else they inevitably eat? The snails that are right in the way.

So this is super fun and simple. It’s a nice, big, fat pepper-crusted striploin, pan-seared and basted, covered in buttered snails and then, boom, a nice big watercress salad. We know surf ‘n’ turf. Now we have turf ‘n’ turf.

Chris Cosentino is the Head Chef at Acacia House in the Napa Valley

Serves: 1
Time: 30 minutes


Ingredients 

Striploin

1 Westholme striploin
7g Red Boat salt
34g Red Boat Phu Quoc black peppercorns
Oil, for cooking
2 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs thyme
1 shallot, thickly sliced, for basting
6 garlic cloves, crushed, for basting
84g butter

Snails, to finish

12 Helix snails (see below)
20g garlic, sliced
18g flat leaf parsley
Salt and pepper
Lemon Zest

To serve

32g watercress
18g shaved shallots
Flaked salt & pepper
Meyer lemon zest
Meyer lemon juice

Snails, to prepare

1 can 90 count Helix nails
Champagne
Lemon peel
1 fresh bay leaf
2 sprigs thyme

METHOD 

Striploin & Snails, to finish

  1. Season the striploin with Red Boat salt then press crushed peppercorns on both sides of the steak.
  2. Using a cast iron pan on medium high heat, add a little oil to start the pan then add the steak. Let the steak sear and release its own fat, ensuring a good crust.
  3. Place the rosemary and thyme on top of the steak, add the sliced shallot and garlic and add the butter. Start to baste the steak, releasing the flavour of the herbs on the steak. Flip the steak over and continue the basting process until the steak reaches 38C / 100F. Remove from the pan and let rest on a rack. Strain the basting butter into another pan to cook the snails.
  4. Over medium high heat, add the snails, garlic and parsley and cook until hot through and aromatic. Season the snails with salt and black pepper and some fresh lemon zest.

To serve

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the watercress, shaved shallots, flaked salt and pepper.
  2. Once the meat is rested, slice 3 cuts and arrange on the plate. Place the rest of the steak on the plate. Top the steak with the snails, garlic and parsley. Then top that with watercress and shallot salad, and top with lemon zest.
  3. Strain the snail butter into a sauce container, pour over the cut meat then add a squeeze of lemon.

Snails, to prepare

  1. Rinse snails in water to remove any can liquid and purge.
  2. Place in a non-reactive pot, cover with Champagne, add lemon peel, bay leaf and thyme. Bring to a simmer over medium heat until the Champagne is ¾ reduced. Transfer to a non-reactive container and cool.


Recipe | June 7 2022

The tenderloin tail can be a bit overlooked but it makes a great tartare. Whether I chop it or hand-grind it, I don’t muck about with the meat too much. A lot of times when people are grinding meat, they mix in all the fat and it starts to coat the meat. You lose the flavour on the palate. The way I do it is clean, it keeps the integrity of the meat and the fat.

With the accompaniments, I’m thinking about what the animal eats. We have a nice thick slab of multigrain bread made with grains the animal eats and our ‘hayaioli’ is an aioli but made with wheatgrass to pick up on the hay the cows chew on. That’s why the alfalfa is there too: if you let the sprouts keep growing, they become hay. And I use toasted almonds because the Westholme wagyu feed includes almond hulls. It’s texture and flavour but it’s also fun.

Chris Cosentino is the Head Chef at Acacia House in the Napa Valley

Serves: 4
Time: 90 minutes


Ingredients 

Tartare

340g / 12 oz Westholme tenderloin tail
10g hemp seeds, toasted
15g Marcona almonds, toasted, chopped
2g Jacobsen sea salt
2g freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, grated zest
2 tsp sorghum vinegar
3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
4 thick slices whole-wheat seeded rustic bread, grilled
Hayaioli (recipe below)
¼ cup pickled shallots (recipe below)
¼ cup alfalfa sprouts

Hayaioli

15g garlic cloves, peeled
4g kosher salt
2 egg yolks
5g Dijon mustard
30g olive oil
244g wheatgrass oil (see below)
10g boiled russet potato
2g ground black pepper

Wheatgrass Oil

1½ cups wheatgrass
23g kosher salt
1 cup extra virgin olive oil

Pickled Shallots

2 shallots
224g red wine vinegar
5g peppercorns
28g sugar
10g salt
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme

METHOD 

Tartare

  1. Hand cut the tail of the tenderloin into ½ cm (¼ in.) dice, saving the rest of the tenderloin for another dish.
  2. Add toasted hemp seeds and chopped almonds then mix gently in a bowl over a bowl of ice to prevent the fat from smearing. Season with salt, pepper, lemon zest to taste and mix. Add sorghum vinegar and olive oil.
  3. To serve, spread the tartare on the grilled bread and dot with Hayaioli and pickled shallots and then top with alfalfa sprouts. Finish with a grind of black pepper and some sea salt. 

Hayaioli

  1. Pound garlic with salt in mortar and pestle until it forms a paste.
  2. Add egg yolks and mustard and stir with pestle until combined.
  3. Slowly drizzle in 30g of olive oil, stirring vigorously with pestle. Once aioli begins to emulsify, transfer to a food processor and add the potato then slowly add in the wheatgrass oil. Incorporate all oil and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.

Wheatgrass Oil

  1. Blanch the wheatgrass until super bright green in a pot of well-salted boiling water, just for a few seconds, then shock it in ice water. Drain and pat dry with towels.
  2. Place the wheatgrass and olive oil in a blender and blend until smooth.
  3. Strain the oil through a fine mesh strainer, layered with a cheesecloth.
  4. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until needed. This will keep for over a week but it’s best when it’s fresh. 

Pickled Shallots

  1. Using a mandolin, shave the peeled shallots into a non-reactive container.
  2. On the stove over medium heat, in a non-reactive pot, heat the vinegar, sugar, spices and salt to a quick boil then cool.


Recipe | June 1 2022

When I come up with a recipe, I think about the animal, how it lives, how it moves, what it does, its environment.

For this wagyu cheek dish, I think about how cows are always chewing. The cheek muscles are used more than their leg muscles. Because the cheeks are constantly moving, they have that intensity: we marinate them, braise them, glaze them with molasses and finally baste them with a peppercorn jus.

I also think about what the cattle eat and in this case, I’m making a kind of porridge using all the grains that the cow eats, ground up and cooked out slowly. I think that’s a fun one for folks. It’s that connectivity between the animal and its feed.

This is food to elicit discussion. Food is about conversations: I think we’ve gotten away from that a little bit but I firmly believe in sitting down and eating together.

Chris Cosentino is the Head Chef at Acacia House in the Napa Valley

Serves: 4
Time: 5 hours, plus two days marinating


Ingredients 

Braised Wagyu Cheeks

4 Westholme wagyu cheeks
Salt & black pepper
2 onions, roughly chopped
2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
2 carrots, roughly chopped
4 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
750ml red wine
Veal stock, to cover

To Serve

1 bunch broccoli rabe
28g blackstrap molasses
18g sorghum vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
35g garlic, sliced
3g chilli flakes
Salt
15g lemon zest
2 btsp green peppercorns, marinated in 52g Red Boat fish sauce
4 cups cooked (2 cups raw) Multigrain Porridge (see below)

Multigrain Porridge

3 tbsp hemp seeds
¼ cup steel cut oats
¼ cup farro
2 tbsp flax seeds
¼ cup barley
¼ cup buckwheat
¼ cup corn
Milk
Salt & pepper
Butter
Parmesan cheese

METHOD 

  1. Trim silverskin from wagyu cheeks, season with salt and black pepper, and place in a non-reactive container. Add the onion, celery, carrot, thyme and bay leaves. Add red wine, cover and place in refrigerator overnight.
  2. Remove wagyu cheeks from the wine marinade and set aside. Preheat the oven to 120C/250F. In a pan over medium high heat, sear cheeks on both sides, remove and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, caramelise the vegetables from the marinade, reserving the wine, bay leaf and thyme. Once caramelised, deglaze the pan with the wine and cook until ¾ reduced then add the veal stock to cover. Bring to a simmer. Let simmer for 20 minutes then blend the vegetables with the stock. Strain over the beef cheeks into a Dutch oven.
  4. Add the thyme and bay leaf and cook in a preheated 120C/250F oven for 3.5 hours. Remove from oven and cool in the liquid overnight before using to get the best flavour. 

To serve

  1. Trim the tough stem ends on the broccoli rabe and blanch it in salted boiling water, then shock in salted ice water. Remove and set aside.
  2. In a non-reactive pan over medium high heat, add blackstrap molasses and let simmer and bubble. Deglaze with the sorghum vinegar then add the beef cheek braising liquid with the beef cheeks. Baste with the sauce and then place in the oven for a few minutes. Remove and baste again and then place in the salamander to get the meat to glace.
  3. While the cheeks are in the salamander, heat up the porridge (see below) stirring and loosening with milk if necessary.
  4. In a separate pan over medium high heat, add extra virgin olive oil then the garlic and broccoli rabe, tossing to heat through, add the chilli flakes and adjust the seasoning with salt and lemon zest.
  5. Strain green peppercorns and add to the wagyu cheek jus. Baste the cheeks again.
  6. To plate, place porridge offset in the bowl then lay the cheek half on and half off the porridge. Sauce the beef cheek with the wagyu cheek peppercorn jus, then top with the sauteed broccoli rabe. Repeat this 3 more times then hurry up and serve the guests while it’s hot.

Multigrain Porridge

  1. Using a grain mill, set the mill to medium-coarse. Grind everything but the hemp seeds.
  2. Mix together in a non-reactive pot, starting with cold water with a 5 to 1 ratio (5 cups liquid to 1 cup dry). Cook over medium-low for 40 minutes constantly stirring so it doesn’t stick or scald. Once the grains absorb the water, add milk, season with salt and black pepper then finish with butter and Parmesan cheese. Store covered with a sheet of butter paper until needed.


Recipe | May 18 2022

This whimsical pre-dessert palate cleanser is a kind of sweet-savoury sundae. At his San Francisco restaurant Mr Jiu’s, chef Brandon Jew sometimes does a beef heart version of the jerky, but wagyu has special qualities. “Because the wagyu is so marbled, it becomes almost flossy,” he says. The ice milk is dressed with sorghum. “It tastes like maple syrup and is used in the American South, but it’s also used in China to make [the spirit] baiju.”

The interweaving of Chinese and American influence is part of the approach at Mr Jiu’s. “The restaurant is really personal in a sense of wanting to express Chinese-America,” says Brandon.

Brandon Jew is the head chef at Mr Jiu’s in San Francisco

Serves: 6
Time: 1 hour, plus 4 days curing, dehydrating, freezing


Ingredients 

115g (4 oz) Smoked Ice Milk (see below)
30g (1 oz) tapioca, cooked and held in filtered water
30g (1 oz) sorghum syrup
1 Cured Wagyu Cheek (see below)
3 lychees, seeds removed and split
60g (2 oz) candied cashews 1 tsp cocoa powder

Smoked Ice Milk

550g milk
185g cream, smoked
90g sugar
55g glucose
5g salt
12g whiskey
3g vanilla extract
0.5 vanilla beans

Cured Wagyu Cheek

1 Westholme wagyu cheek
coriander seeds
green peppercorns
red Sichuan peppercorns
kosher salt
granulated cane sugar
pink curing salt No. 2

METHOD 

Smoked Ice Milk

  1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pot. Gently warm to dissolve the sugar, salt and glucose. Allow to steep for 30-40 minutes.
  2. Strain and cast into Pacoject sleeves or pint containers. Freeze overnight.

Cured Wagyu Cheek

  1. Trim sinew from wagyu cheek.
  2. Calculate the following seasonings and spices based on the trimmed weight.
    • .05% coriander seeds
    • .05% green peppercorns
    • .05% red Sichuan peppercorns
    • 3% kosher salt
    • 1% granulated cane sugar
    • .16% pink curing salt No. 2
  3. Cure for 2 days then dehydrate at 60C / 140F for 2 days.

To Serve

  1. Scoop Smoked Ice Milk in a bowl, add sorghum syrup, lychees, cashews and tapioca.
  2. Flake over Cured Wagyu Cheek and dust with cocoa powder.


Recipe | May 11 2022

The oversized lion’s head meatball in broth is a Shanghainese dish, traditionally made with pork but Brandon Jew, owner-chef of Mr Jiu’s in San Francisco, uses wagyu striploin here, as well as fat and tendon. The meat is finely minced using cleavers, developing the tacky proteins that ensure it holds together when it’s simmered in a claypot.

“Meat in Chinese cuisine is utilised in a really thoughtful way,” says Brandon. “Cooks think about how to use all of its flavour, all of its parts, almost in thankfulness and praise of that animal. Extending the flavour and utility is a huge part of Chinese cuisine.”

Brandon Jew is the head chef at Mr Jiu’s in San Francisco

Serves: 4
Time: 1 hour 15 minutes


Ingredients 

100g beef fat, diced
50g beef tendon, blanched, chopped
400g Westholme striploin, finely chopped
30g tofu, ground
3 tbsp ginger, chopped
4g salt
1g white pepper, finely ground
10g fish sauce
90g (3 oz) Napa cabbage cheek, in the piece
1 bunch Tokyo turnips
60g (2 oz) crab shell stock
30g (1 oz) green garlic
60g (2 oz) Dungeness crab, picked
7 chives, cut into 2cm (1 in) batons

METHOD 

  1. With a cleaver in each hand, mince beef fat, tendon and striploin until it starts to get tacky and is finely minced.
  2. Add tofu, ginger, salt, white pepper and fish sauce.
  3. Sear cabbage, cut side down, until blackened and place in base of claypot, blackened side up.
  4. Form about ¼ meat mixture into a ball and place into claypot over cabbage. (Repeat with remaining meat if making more serves.)
  5. Add turnips (reserve one for garnish), crab stock and garlic around the meatball.
  6. Bring the claypot to a simmer, place lid on top and place in preheated oven  (190C/375F) for 45 minutes.
  7. Place crab in a steamer to reheat.
  8. Remove claypot and garnish dish with shaved tokyo turnip.
  9. Place crab meat on top of the meatball.
  10. Garnish with chives.


Recipe | April 4 2022

This is my “meat from the motherland”. I grew up in the dawn of what I call the Age of Convenience where fast food, frozen dinners, and canned soups and fruits dominated much of the American family table. Fortunately for me, my mother was “anti-convenience” and she was in the kitchen almost every evening for at least an hour preparing our family dinner.

I wasn’t much help to her as she prepared her delicious brisket or leg of lamb. When she was done, she and my father, my sister and I gathered around the dinner table, no television in sight, and talked about our day. I might not have even realised it then but my mother planted the seeds of my love of cooking and gathering around the table.

Unlike some mothers of today who have a vast repertoire of recipes, my mom Doris had only about a dozen tried and true dishes she prepared while I was growing up in the 1950s and 60s. And by the way, they weren’t recipes, just dishes she made from trial and a few errors that she was quick to fix.

Of all of them, my favourite was her brisket, which she cooked for God-knows-how-many hours. I would come home from grammar school and I swear I could smell – even feel – the brisket before I even opened our front door.

But then, then “the wait” began. She wouldn’t let me tear into it until our beloved nightly ritual; my mom, my dad Lawrence, my sister Gail and I sitting around the dinner table discussing our day. It was a cherished routine, something that I think is becoming a rarity in today’s technology-crazed world.

It’s probably no big surprise what I’m going to say next, but I’ll say it anyway. That brisket was delicious.

Serves: 6
Time: 1 hour, plus 8 hours cooking time


Ingredients 

Brisket al Forno

1 Westholme brisket, cut in half
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, cut into quarters
1 carrot, cut into quarters
1 celery stalk, cut into quarters
1 fennel, cut into quarters
70g (2.5 oz) tomato paste
1½ tbsp mustard seeds
4 chile de arbol
3 bay leaves
1 large or 2 small garlic heads
1 x 750ml bottle red wine
1 x 375ml bottle stout beer
1.4L (1½ Qt) chicken, veal or beef stock
salt & black pepper
3 sprigs thyme
1 small bunch parsley

Horseradish Cream

1 cup crème fraiche
2 tbsp Atomic horseradish
1 tbsp horseradish grated
1 tsp kosher salt
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp Worcestershire sauce
¼ tsp Tabasco

Salsa Verde

2 anchovies
2 garlic cloves
½ cup oregano leaves
1 cup mint leaves
¼ cup parsley leaves
½ lemon, juiced
1½ tsp capers
extra virgin olive oil, to blend
salt & pepper

METHOD 

Brisket al Forno

  1. In a rondeau (heavy-based pan), heat up vegetable oil. Season brisket on both sides with salt and pepper. Sear brisket well on both sides and place in a large Dutch oven or roasting pan.
  2. Pour out excess oil from rondeau and add onion, carrot, celery and fennel. Saute.
  3. Add tomato paste and saute until caramelised.
  4. Add mustard seeds, chile de arbol, bay and garlic. Cook, stirring.
  5. Deglaze with red wine and beer. Add stock. Taste and adjust seasoning. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  6. Pour mixture over brisket. Tie together thyme and parsley and add to roasting pan. Cover tightly with lid or foil. Place in 150C / 300F oven and braise overnight or for about 8 hours.
  7. Serve alongside Horseradish Cream (see below) and Salsa Verde (see below).

Horseradish Cream

  1. In a bowl, add all ingredients and mix until cohesive.

Salsa Verde

  1. In a blender or mortar and pestle, combine all ingredients until coarsely mixed.
  2. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


Recipe | April 29 2022

“My family is Cantonese,” says San Francisco chef Brandon Jew, owner of Mr Jiu’s. “A lot of Cantonese cuisine is based on finding the purity of certain ingredients but also understanding how to accentuate flavour.”

It’s that understanding and subtlety that comes to the fore in this sizzling dish. “There’s a Cantonese technique where you dress fish with ginger and scallion, then pour over hot peanut oil and let it do the searing,” says Brandon.

In this version, wagyu is used instead of seafood and wagyu fat replaces peanut oil. “It creates its own dressing, almost a broken vinaigrette,” he says. “And the hot oil also opens up the aroma from the ginger and scallion.”

Brandon Jew is the head chef at Mr Jiu’s in San Francisco

Serves: 2-4
Time: 10 minutes, plus 3 hours rendering


Ingredients 

120g (4 oz) Westholme picanha, trimmed and sliced into batons, cap fat reserved
10g ginger, sliced into batons
10g scallion, white parts, julienned
12g superior light soy sauce
20g coriander (cilantro) picked at 2cm/1 in lengths
1-2 celtuce, shaved in 2cm/1 in squares (see note)

METHOD 

  1. Cube cap fat and blanch it in boiling water. Strain and place in a small pot on low heat to gently render the fat to liquid for about 3 hours or until the fat has separated, melted and is clear and glossy. When rendered, strain into another pot. Set aside.
  2. Arrange picanha batons on a plate in a row.
  3. Garnish with sliced ginger, scallion and soy sauce.
  4. Returned rendered fat to high heat. When fat starts to smoke, ladle hot fat over the picanha.
  5. Garnish with coriander (cilantro) and celtuce.

Note: Celtuce is a lettuce grown especially for its thick stem.


Recipe | April 7 2022

We play with steak au poivre at Wildair and this is a version of that. Instead of using cream to flavour and thicken the sauce, we emulsify brown butter and egg to create a thick sauce. It’s creamy but it also has a huge punch of different peppercorns, each of them playing different parts: numbing, tingling, heat. It really dials into a nice, creamy, peppery sauce but it reads differently: coating the tongue and not being too overpowering and filling.

Jeremiah Stone and Fábian von Hauske are co-head chefs at Contra and Wildair in New York. 

Serves: 2
Time: 1 hour


Ingredients 

Steak

1 250g – 300g (8.8-10.6 oz) Westholme picanha
1 head black garlic

Wildair Au Poivre Sauce

300g (10.6 oz) butter
1 tbsp green peppercorns in brine
5g black peppercorns
5g Sichuan peppercorns
2 egg yolks
20ml (2/3 oz) shirodashi
Splash white wine vinegar
Kosher salt
30ml (1 oz) cognac, cooked off

METHOD 

  1. Cook butter until slightly nutty and browning.
  2. Let it cool to about 64C / 147F and drizzle into two egg yolks in a blender.
  3. Throw in green peppercorns and grind in black and Sichuan peppercorns.
  4. Blend, seasoning with shirodashi and vinegar and a splash of water if it’s too thick. Add salt to taste and cognac.
  5. Slow-cook steak in the oven at 52C / 125F on a rack for 40 minutes.
  6. Sear in a hot pan and brush with black garlic.
  7. Let rest for 10 minutes, slice thinly and serve with pepper sauce.


Recipe | April 3 2022

This spectacular roast ribeye is a spin on beggar’s chicken, a classic Chinese dish that was traditionally wrapped in lotus leaves and baked in clay. “The story goes that a beggar stole a chicken and hid it by burying it underground,” says chef Brandon Jew from San Francisco’s Mr Jiu’s. “When he came back it was a juicy, juicy chicken.”

A salt crust performs the same function as clay: slowing down the cooking, sealing in moisture and gently imparting salinity and flavour, almost like an infusion. “The juices have nowhere to go,” says Brandon. “The dish keeps basting itself.”

The ribeye is seasoned with nori before wrapping and baking, and the egg white casing is flavoured with lemongrass tea. “We’re mixing land and sea elements, layering umami, using the Chinese philosophy of building exciting flavour on the palate,” says Brandon.

Fermented tea and blackened scallions are added after carving, bringing bitterness that contracts with the rich meat. “We experience the quality of the fat because the ribeye isn’t caramelised, the fat isn’t rendered,” says Brandon. “You can really taste how velvety it is. To me, it’s about accentuating textures as well as building flavours.”

Brandon Jew is the head chef at Mr Jiu’s in San Francisco

Serves: 6-8
Time: 2 hours 30 minutes, plus overnight seasoning


Ingredients 

600g (20 oz) approx. Westholme bone-in ribeye
Salt
Pepper
Nori, blitzed
1/2 cup egg whites
450g (1 lb) kosher salt
3 tbsp lemongrass tea
1 dried lotus leaf, soaked to rehydrate for about 1 hr
1 bunch scallion greens
60g (2 oz) black trumpet mushrooms
2 shallots, in small dice
Neutral oil, for cooking
30g (1 oz) yuba (tofu skin), cut into squares
60g (2 oz) fermented Dragon Well green tea leaves
2 tbsp charcoal flaked salt
3 tbsp roasted black sesame seeds

METHOD 

  1. Season ribeye with salt, pepper and nori crumb, then store in refrigerator overnight.
  2. Whip egg whites to soft peaks then mix with salt and lemongrass tea.
  3. Wrap ribeye with lotus leaf and pack with egg white mixture.
  4. Roast in a convention oven at 200C / 400F for 1 hour. Place scallions on a sheet tray and add to oven.
  5. Pull out blackened scallions, lower the oven temperature to 175C / 350F and roast wagyu for another 30 minutes, approx.
  6. Use a thermometer to check internal temperature. When it’s 46C / 115F, remove wagyu from oven and let rest for 20 minutes. When internal temperature reaches 49C / 120F, crack salt and unwrap beef.
  7. Blend burnt scallions to a powder in a Vitamix or similar.
  8. Sauté black trumpet mushrooms with shallot and oil.
  9. Mix in a bowl with yuba and fermented tea leaves.
  10. Carve ribeye to serve, top with yuba mixture and garnish with charcoal salt, scallion ash and black sesame.


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