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Brandon Jew's Smoked Peppercorn Ice Milk with Shaved Wagyu Cheek Jerky

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


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


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.

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