Amazing, delicious, and a bit expensive…
For the dish plated above, I used the following ingredients:
- A4 rated Wagyu steak (A5 is too fatty for me.)
- Dried shiitake mushrooms
- Unsalted butter
I started with the shiitake mushroom sauce, which takes the longest to prepare. Chop up some dried shiitake mushrooms and onions. I like using dried mushrooms because they have more concentrated flavors (I’ve written about this before). Boil the mushrooms and onions in water, then let it simmer until the liquid reduces and the sauce slightly thickens. I let it simmer for about an hour. I also sautéed some slices of onion in butter and added them to the mushroom sauce at the end.
The asparagus is also sautéed in butter. I did this just before searing the steak. You just need to heat up the asparagus enough so that it gets hot and the cell membranes start to break. I like my asparagus to be slightly soft with just a bit of crunch. If the asparagus isn’t heated up enough, it will be crunchy like an apple. But be careful that you don’t nuke it, otherwise you’ll end up with soggy, burned asparagus.
The hardest part about this recipe was finding the Wagyu – if you haven’t done so yet, read my blog entry on how I got this particular piece of beef. My steak slices were about 1 to 1.5 inches thick and I was able to make quite a lot of slices from the three kilograms of Wagyu I had.
For the steak, all you need is salt, pepper, and unsalted butter. I used the unsalted butter to avoid making the steak too salty. Brining isn’t really necessary for this kind of beef because it is seared rare to medium-rare; the meat doesn’t get hot enough to cause the protein strands to constrict.
Trim the fat. Season the steak with salt and pepper on both sides. Melt some butter and get the pan hot. Sear the steak for a maximum of three minutes on each side. As you are searing, spoon the butter over the steak. You will ruin the meat if you cook it for too long – the beauty of this beef can only be experienced if you cook it rare or medium-rare. If you can’t stand to see pink in your steak, you probably should stick to a cheaper type of beef.