Although I am descended from many generations of beef cattle farmers, I learned the proper way to eat Kobe Beef (or any steak sandwich or maybe even a hamburger) while watching Japanese TV. The NHK – World Japan show Cool Japan ran an episode on sandwiches and included a segment on the elite and expensive beef.
I have had a wagyu hamburger on occasion, but I don’t recall that it was paired with a particular set of condiments. Clearly, I was doing it wrong. In the show, the kobe beef sandwich was prepared in a very particular way:
First, the meat was grilled rare.
Second, the bread was plain white.
Third, only a mixture of mayonnaise and mustard was spread on a slice of the white bread.
Fourth, the crusts – and some of the meat that extended beyond the bread – were sliced off.
The beauty is in the simplicity of the preparation. I usually cover my burger in onion, lettuce, pickle, tomato, avocado, sometimes beets, sometimes kimchi, mushrooms, or whatever else I have on hand. My steak is usually slathered in sauce. The flavor of the kobe beef largely stood on its own. The mayonnaise-mustard combination magnified the taste.
Price: $230 US Dollars (and this was not the most expensive beef sandwich in the tiny restaurant)
Since I left the farm, I rarely eat steak anymore. But I’m going to try this simple (bun, mayonnaise and mustard) approach with my burgers. Maybe it will give them a bit of a new lift.
For more on Cool Japan, Free Foreign TV or Free Foreign Movies.