There’s a reason why Wagyu ribeye steaks are considered the best around. Because this type of beef is so flavorful, tender, and expensive, you’ll want to be mindful of how you cook the steak so that it doesn’t lose its rich flavor.
What is Wagyu Beef?
The Wagyu beef industry is one of the most famous and highly prized in the world. The term “Wagyu” refers to the Japanese style of cattle breeding that originated in the early 1900s in Kumamoto Prefecture on the island of Kyushu. The cattle have been selectively bred for hundreds of years to produce highly marbled cuts of meat. In fact, these cattle are so high in fat that they require special diets just to keep from becoming overweight.
You may have heard of marbling, the fat that’s dispersed throughout certain cuts of meat. There are two main types: “intermuscular” and “intramuscular.” Intermuscular is dispersed throughout the muscles that run through the meat—the term refers to its position in relation to those muscles (within). Intramuscular refers to fat that’s directly inside one muscle. The more marbling you have, the better!
A popular commodity around the world, Wagyu is distinguished by its combination of the following characteristics:
- Elevated levels of intramuscular fat that results in
- Finely marbled meat
- Exceptional tenderness and texture
What is Ribeye Steak?
A ribeye is a cut from the beef tenderloin, which is found underneath the ribs and is one of the most expensive cuts of beef available. It is incredibly delicious and soft, making it an excellent choice for a special occasion.
Best Way to Cook Wagyu Ribeye Steaks
When it comes to seasoning your wagyu ribeye steaks, you need to be careful to not overdo it. If you over season wagyu, you will lose the unique flavor of the meat, which is already delectable on its own. The secret is to season lightly on all sides and allow the taste of the meat to come through. Salting too early can cause the juices to be drawn out of the meat, which makes for a dry piece of meat once cooked through.
There are two ways you can cook Wagyu beef at home: grilled or pan-seared.
The best way to cook a Wagyu ribeye is to cook it on a hot grill so that the outside has a nice sear while the inside remains medium-rare. Preheat the grill to high heat and give it 10 minutes to get really hot. Sear the steak on both sides for three minutes each before moving the meat to a cooler part of the grill and cooking slowly until it reaches an internal temperature of 120°F (for rare), 125°F (rare plus) or 130°F (medium rare). Remove from the grill when done.
For a simple pan-searing method that results in perfect medium rare steak every time, start with a cast iron skillet on high heat until smoking hot. Add one tablespoon of butter per side to coat the pan, then add steaks and cook 2-3 mins per side for medium rare or 3-4 mins per side for medium well/well done. Remove from heat once the desired doneness is achieved.
Either way, remember to avoid the mistake of cooking it for too long because this will melt the marbling and ruin the flavor. Invest in a good meat thermometer and cook the steak to medium rare so that it retains some of its juices. After you remove it from the heat, cover it with aluminum foil and let it rest for a few minutes to let the juices redistribute throughout the meat. If you’re serving it with a side of vegetables, like steamed broccoli or green beans, you’ll want to steam them first and then toss in some butter to create a delicious side.