The Art of Wagyu Roast Beef: A Symphony of Flavors

If you’re a fan of melt-in-your-mouth beef, then you’re in for a treat. Wagyu Roast Beef Don, a modern take on the classic beef bowl, has been gaining popularity in Japan for the past decade. With thinly sliced sheets of succulent wagyu beef, a savory sweet onion sauce, and a tangy wasabi cream, this dish is a symphony of textures and tastes that will leave you craving more.

The Key to Perfection

What makes this recipe work so well? Let’s uncover the secrets:

  • Steaming: After browning the beef on all sides, water is added to the pan, allowing the meat to gently steam. This technique prevents the pan from getting too hot while ensuring the beef cooks evenly.
  • Onion Sauce: The beef juices in the pan are utilized to create a mouthwatering savory-sweet onion sauce that perfectly complements the Japanese-style roast beef.
  • Wasabi Cream: A second sauce is made by blending Japanese mayo, fresh wasabi, and a touch of lemon juice. This creamy and slightly spicy concoction adds a delightful contrast to the rich meat.
  • Stretching the Wagyu: By slicing the beef thinly and serving it over a bowl of rice, you can make the most out of your expensive wagyu, serving 3-4 people without compromising on flavor.

Ingredients for Wagyu Roast Beef Donburi

Here’s what you’ll need for this culinary masterpiece:

  • Beef: Opt for a tender cut of beef, approximately 3″ x 3″ x 6″ in size. While any tender cut will do, we recommend using A5 grade wagyu beef, such as Kagoshima kuroge chuck flap. If your beef is larger or smaller, adjust the steaming time accordingly.
  • Japanese Mayonnaise: Tangier and richer in flavor than its Western counterpart, Japanese mayo (Kewpie brand) is the perfect choice for this recipe.
  • Lemon Juice: A splash of lemon juice adds a sharp tang to the wasabi cream, balancing out the dish’s richness.
  • Wasabi: Freshly grated wasabi is ideal, but if it’s hard to find, wasabi in a tube will work just fine.
  • Onion: Grated onions sautéed until golden brown create the base for the succulent onion sauce.
  • Sake: Sake adds flavor and umami to the onion sauce, and any alcohol content boils off as the sauce reduces. If you can’t find sake, water with a pinch of MSG can be used as a substitute.
  • Soy Sauce: The primary seasoning for the onion sauce. For a gluten-free alternative, tamari or coconut aminos can be used.
  • Sugar: Balancing the flavors with a touch of sweetness, you can adjust the sugar to your taste. Honey or maple syrup can be used as alternatives.
  • Rice: Japanese short-grain rice, with its sticky and chewy texture, is the perfect companion for this dish. Cook it in a rice cooker or follow our stovetop recipe.
  • Scallions: Chopped scallions not only add a vibrant green touch but also infuse the bowl with a subtle onion flavor.
  • Black Pepper: The classic pairing of beef and black pepper brings an extra layer of depth to the dish. Feel free to experiment with other spices like sansho or shichimi togarashi.
  • Eggs: While traditionally served with a raw yolk, it’s essential to prioritize food safety. If you’re confident in the quality of your eggs, go ahead and add the raw yolk. Otherwise, consider preparing an onsen tamago to top off the bowl.
Further reading:  The Art of Perfectly Baking Hamburger Steaks

How to Create Wagyu Roast Beef Donburi

Let’s dive into the cooking process:

  1. Begin by sprinkling salt on all sides of the beef, allowing it to rest for about 30 minutes. This step seasons the beef and draws out excess moisture, facilitating browning.
  2. Whisk together the Japanese mayo, lemon juice, and wasabi, creating a vibrant wasabi cream sauce. Adjust the amount of wasabi to your taste and keep the sauce refrigerated until needed.
  3. Use paper towels to pat dry any liquid on the surface of the beef. If you’re using a leaner cut, rub the surface with oil.
  4. Heat a frying pan over medium heat until it starts to sizzle. Add the beef, ensuring the pan isn’t too hot to prevent burning. Brown all four sides.
  5. To assess the beef’s doneness, check one of the two remaining sides. It should be cooked about a quarter of the way through on all four sides. If needed, return to a side that requires further cooking.
  6. Soak up any excess oil in the pan with a paper towel, while preserving the browned fond. Add a quarter cup of water and quickly cover the pan with a lid. Reduce the heat and let the beef steam for 8-12 minutes, flipping it halfway through.
  7. For a rare roast beef, aim for an internal temperature of 120°F (49°C). For medium rare, reach 130°F (54°C). Once the desired temperature is reached, remove the beef from the pan and let it rest for at least 10 minutes, allowing the proteins to relax and the juices to redistribute.
  8. In the same pan, increase the heat and add the grated onions. Sauté until they turn golden brown, which should take about four minutes. If the beef didn’t render much fat during steaming, add a bit of oil.
  9. Once the onions are browned, deglaze the pan with sake, boiling until the alcohol aroma dissipates. Then, add the sugar and soy sauce, cooking until the onion sauce thickens slightly.
  10. When the roast beef has rested, use a long sharp knife to slice it as thinly as possible.
  11. Assemble the roast beef donburi by placing a generous mound of rice in a large bowl. Drizzle a small amount of the onion sauce over the rice.
  12. Arrange a beautiful layer of roast beef around the rice, creating a small indentation in the center to hold the egg yolk.
  13. Drizzle more onion sauce onto the beef, crack some black pepper over the top, and garnish with chopped scallions.
  14. To perfect the roast beef bowl, add a dollop of wasabi cream onto a portion of the beef and top the donburi with a luscious egg yolk.
Further reading:  What to Pair with Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Try More Rice Bowl Recipes

Don’t stop at Wagyu Roast Beef Donburi! Here are a few more delectable rice bowl recipes to explore:

  • Oyako Don (Chicken & Egg)
  • Chicken Katsudon
  • Tanin Don (Beef and Egg)
  • Buta Don (Pork Bowl)
  • Gyudon (Beef Bowl)

Frequently Asked Questions

Now that you have the recipe in hand, let’s address a few common questions.

📖 Recipe

For the full recipe with detailed instructions, visit Rowdy Hog Smokin BBQ. Enjoy the art of Wagyu Roast Beef Donburi and elevate your dining experience with this symphony of flavors.