How to Cook Wagyu Beef at Home

If you have a piece of Wagyu beef in your kitchen ready to cook, congratulations! You’re about to enjoy an out of this world meal. The first thing you probably did when you brought home that amazing piece of meat, is to search the web for ‘How to cook Wagyu beef at home’.

Take a deep breath. Cooking Wagyu beef is pretty simple, you’ll just need to follow a few easy steps and use a little extra care when cooking.

 

Before you start, a few things to keep in mind about Wagyu beef

100% genuine Japanese Wagyu beef has a different composition than other beef breeds like Angus, and even Wagyu crossbreeds. Wagyu beef is special for a reason, and considerable care should be taken when cooking this delicate meat.

When your Wagyu arrives, you’ll notice that the meat is more pink in color, rather than the deep red beef steaks that are found in the supermarket. This pinkish color is the result of the high marbling throughout the muscle. It’s this rich, buttery fat that gives Wagyu it’s incredible, melt in your mouth flavor.

Due to the high marbling, do not use oils, butters, or other fats when cooking. The high fat content also means that the steak is more susceptible to burning, and if you want to achieve a rare, rare-plus, or medium rare temperature, you’ll need to have a watchful eye throughout the quick cooking process.

 

Things You’ll Need

  • Cask iron skillet
  • Flaked sea salt
  • Meat thermometer

Cask iron skillets are a great way to cook wagyu beef at home. These skillets are known for their ability to maintain a uniform heat across the entire cooking surface, and for cooking meat evenly at a high temperature.

Pre-heating the skillet also gives home cooks the ability to sear a steak for a beautiful crispy finish.

Flaked sea salt enhances the rich, butter flavor of the Wagyu beef.

Meat thermometers are used to provide the most precise cooking times. Use cooking times as a guide, but confirm doneness with a meat thermometer - this will always ensure the most accurate level of doneness. When you’re cooking a delicacy like Japanese A5 Wagyu beef, it's important to be as accurate as possible so you don’t overcook the meat.

 

Thawing and Defrosting Wagyu Beef

More often than not, the Wagyu beef you ordered from an online retailer arrived frozen to preserve freshness.

Avoid removing the Wagyu from the freezer sealed packaging. Instead, place the meat in the refrigerator, just as it’s packaged, and let thaw for between 36-48 hours. You don’t want to rush this process. The Wagyu meat must be evenly thawed with no frozen pockets in order to cook evenly.

Tip: Never thaw frozen meat by placing it on the kitchen counter. This can lead to food safety issues (with any kind of meat). 

 

Method

  1. Once thawed, take the steak from the fridge, remove the packaging and salt both sides with sea salt.
  2. Let the steak sit on the counter, uncovered, until it comes to room temperature. Letting the steak come to room temperature makes the steak easier to cook, and allows the salt to work its way into the meat for a more robust flavor.
  3. Preheat the skillet on medium heat to medium-high heat.

 

Steak cooking temperatures

1” steak thickness:

Cook 50 seconds per side for rare

Cook 60 seconds per side for medium-rare

 

1 ¼” steak thickness:

Cook 60 seconds per side for rare

Cook 75 seconds per side for medium-rare

  1. The internal temperature for a rare steak is 120-125 degrees F. The internal temperature for a medium-rare steak is 130-135 degrees F.
  1. Remove from the pan and let the steak rest for 5-10 minutes. Do not cut into the steak until it's done resting.

 

Final thoughts

In Japan, Wagyu beef is traditionally cooked, sliced and then served in small pieces. An eight ounce steak can serve 3-4 people.

Enjoy!

 

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