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Portrait of a Young Man as The Artist
abmann
abmann
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nathan_lounge From: nathan_lounge Date: April 21st, 2009 02:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
That post makes me sad.

The reason true philly cheese steak uses bottom of the barrel meat cuts* is because the whole point of the sandwich is to slice it very thin (taking care of the toughness issue), then cooking it in salt water and slathering it with cheese whiz (taking care of any gamey flavor issues). Whenever you try and fancify this concept, you remove the essential quality of it and end up with an overly expensive roast beef sandwich. If you're going to go that route, then I suggest forgoing tracking down wagyu and just go to reputable kosher deli.

Now, all that said, Kobe is one of God's treasures on earth. I had the opportunity to eat it once and it was worth it. I subsequently had the opportunity to grind the left overs into a burger that was topped with fois gras and truffles. That was off the hook delicious and I highly recommend it. Wagyu is almost as good. Think 90% as good. And when I was in the business it was the only beef I would sell outside of playing around with local farms. So it's definitely worth the bump in price to buy and eat this delicious animal. And at about 1/40th the price of Kobe, it's very reasonable.

Bottom line, you should buy yourself a nice Wagyu steak, don't gussy it up, just a nice sear or grill with some sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Maybe some garlic mashed potato, fresh vegetables, and a nice red wine on the side, and make a meal of it. As far as finding it goes, there's only one domestic farm I would trust: Snake Rivers, which for a long time was marketing their product as "American Kobe", but I'm pretty sure they can't do that anymore. If you can find a butcher in town that is willing to order for you, or know a restaurant owner/chef who is willing to give you a steak out of their weekly order, then go that route. Otherwise, you can air mail an internet order. I'd recommend this company and specifically Darling Downs Wagyu. It's an Australian company and the people I would order 90% of all my beef through. There's a funny Australian grading system (as opposed to the American meat grading system which is crap) but they use the Japanese grading system as far as I know (though an online dealer might list it differently/separately). You'll have to buy some packaged product this way (like a 10-steak pack), but whateve's, just invite me to the BBQ.



*interesting side story, some butchers and meat perveyers in the NE region, know the cut used by the famous Pat's Steaks as some variant of "Pats Cut" or "Pat Steak". It's essentially a cleaned length of chuck. It took me forever to figure this out when I moved up here.

Edited at 2009-04-21 03:06 pm (UTC)
nathan_lounge From: nathan_lounge Date: April 21st, 2009 03:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Realized I put in the wrong link completely contradicting myself. Meant to shout out Broadleaf, not some American Wagyu farm. BTW, Broadleaf is *the* place to go for all your wild game needs. If you're not shooting it yourself, you should buy from them. It also looks like they might break cases and sell individual steaks through their website.
kingfox From: kingfox Date: April 21st, 2009 08:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Believe me, I'm all for abusing expensive ingredients and making horrible atrocities like veal korma (think about it), but you're entirely correct.

There's a place in my town that makes the most amazing "cheese steaks". Fresh Italian bread, a great melty cheese, metal mixing bowls of hot peppers at the bar... but then a real slice of steak for meat. It's a tasty sandwich, but it's not a real cheese steak.

Meanwhile, the real Philly style place around the corner from it uses the appropriate meat, cheese wiz, and produces the kind of greasy mess a real cheese steak should be. They're entirely different beasts.

I still want to make wagyu hamburger helper, though. While I've eaten at both of Morimoto's restaurants and had some interesting wagyu dishes from he whose cuisine reigns supreme, he's never done anything like that.
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