Devoted beef lovers wax eloquently about the merits of coveted Wagyu steaks, one of the most exclusive cuts of meat in the culinary world. It's not just steaks that carry the prized Wagyu designation, with any beef coming from a certified Wagyu cow eligible to be marketed as such. The prestige definitely comes from its Japanese heritage and strict breeding, feeding, and grazing requirements. But, there's another part of Wagyu that's often overlooked, and that's the Wagyu beef tallow.
Beef tallow, including the Wagyu version, is basically just rendered fat that emerges when beef gets cooked, similar to how bacon grease results from cooked bacon. Most chefs, especially ones in the American South, know that cooking with bacon grease infuses food with extra flavor and depth, which is exactly what beef tallows does. Double that when the tallow comes from Wagyu beef, and triple that when Wagyu beef tallow lands on a smoky, slow-cooked cut of brisket.
Upgrading brisket with a touch of Wagyu tallow instantly places the meat in a luxury category — for the taste as well as the price tag. Most authentic Wagyu beef comes from Japan due to its strict restrictions against exporting Wagyu cattle, hence the pricier cost of splurging on its tallow. However, a crossbred version known as American Wagyu exists and is still considered by some to be superior to other beef -- and more affordable than the pure Japanese Wagyu.
Read more: Your Guide To The Different Cuts Of Steak
Elevating Brisket With Wagyu Beef Tallow
Elevating brisket to the level of luxurious indulgence requires an understanding of taste and process. Because it's a saturated fat, beef tallow becomes solid as it cools, condensing all of its flavor into a spreadable form, similar to butter. When that tallow comes from Wagyu beef, there's a major upgrade in taste. As a result of the rich marbling in Wagyu, its tallow is in turn deeply flavorful and robust, with what some interpret as a tinge of sweetness. You'll also experience hints of nutty, buttery, fatty, and umami tones from the beef.
Imagine all of that added to the already craveable joys of eating brisket. Getting Wagyu beef tallow into your brisket is easier than it sounds, requiring no special tools or secret techniques. Think of how you spread butter or lard over various food products; this is much the same. First, you'll want to trim off the excess fat from your cut of brisket. Then, it's time to generously smother the brisket in Wagyu beef tallow, spreading it all across the surface of the meat.
As it slowly cooks, all that magnificent flavor absorbs into the brisket while also tenderizing it for a juicy finale. Finding Wagyu beef tallow for your brisket (or for any other cooking application) isn't as straightforward as a search for other tallow products. Failing availability at local stores or meat markets, it's a click away with online purveyors.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.