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Brandon Jew's Picanha Sizzled in Hot Wagyu Fat

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


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)


  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.

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