Ah, the allure of Picanha Wagyu. Think about the soft, buttery texture, the rich flavors, the satisfying sizzle as it cooks. Now, what if I told you that making this dream a reality is easier than you think? Come with me, as we embark on a culinary journey, crafting the most succulent picanha steak sous vide right at home.
1 - Why You Will Love This Sous Vide Picanha Wagyu Recipe
Ever heard the saying that good things come to those who wait? Well, this Picanha Wagyu recipe is the epitome of that sentiment. The secret lies in the prolonged sous vide bath. This method does wonders, allowing the fat cap to render beautifully. As it slowly melts, the fat infuses the meat, imbuing it with an unparalleled depth of flavor. But we're not stopping there.
After the bath, we trim that rendered fat cap. Why, you ask? This crucial step is our gateway to achieving that golden, flawless crust on the steak's outer layer. Plus, it cleverly sidesteps those pesky flare-ups when we hit the grill. It's a blend of art and science, and the result? Perfection on a plate. Truly, there's no other recipe out there that nails this level of culinary mastery. Dive in and taste the magic for yourself!
2 - The Best Cut of Meat For This Recipe
- Recommended Cut For This Recipe
The star of this show is undeniably the Picanha Wagyu from Snake River Farms. This cut is a gorgeous piece of meat, and if there was a gold medal for the 'world’s best meat,' this would be a contender. Why this cut? Its beautiful marbling ensures each bite is oozing with flavor. And the best part? It's readily available at Snake River Farms. However, if you're popping by your local butcher shop, make sure you ask for a cut that has a good fat cap and an average weight that's perfect for your gathering.
- Other Cuts You Can Use With This Recipe
Not able to get your hands on Picanha Wagyu? Don’t fret! There are other cuts available on the market that come with a generous amount of intramuscular fat, guaranteeing that tender and flavorsome bite. Here are three stellar alternatives:
- Ribeye Roast: A favorite of many, the Ribeye Roast is known for its marbling and rich flavor. With a web of intramuscular fat, this cut promises a melt-in-your-mouth experience.
- Chuck Eye Roast: Often called the "poor man's ribeye," the Chuck Eye boasts significant marbling. It's slightly tougher than the ribeye but, when cooked with our method, you're in for a treat.
- Prime Rib Roast: A classic choice for those seeking intense flavor. This cut's ample marbling ensures a juicy outcome, making it a perfect alternative for our recipe.
Whichever cut you opt for, remember that the key lies in the preparation and cooking method. When executed right, you're bound to embark on a flavorful journey!
- Using Wagyu Picanha, Grass-Fed Beef, or Dry Aged Beef
The secret behind this recipe’s great wagyu flavor? Quality beef. Using Wagyu, especially Japanese Wagyu, elevates the taste thanks to its unique marbling. The rich flavors and buttery texture are unparalleled. If you're experimenting with grass-fed beef, you get lean meat, but with an earthier taste. Dry-aged beef? Oh, it's a game-changer—deep flavors and tenderness that's second to none. Regardless of your choice, always ensure your meat is in excellent condition, and remember, the art of cooking techniques plays a significant role.
3 - Tools Needed
- Sous Vide Precision Cooker: This little gadget ensures your steak cooks perfectly. It's like a bath for your steak, where it slow dances, absorbing flavors and reaching optimal oven temperature.
- Sharp Knife: To ensure that the fat cap and the steak are cut just right. Plus, it’s always safer to work with a sharp knife.
- Metal Skewers: Essential to keep your meat rolled up and in place while grilling.
4 - Seasoning Your Sous Vide Picanha Wagyu
- Using a Marinade
Marinating isn't just about adding flavor; it's about creating an aromatic embrace for your meat. Especially for a stellar cut like our Picanha Wagyu, a marinade ensures those rich tastes are enhanced, not overshadowed.
Wagyu Picanha Marinade Recipe:
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 5 large garlic cloves, minced
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 teaspoon red chili flakes (optional, for a kick)
- Salt to taste
- In a mixing bowl, combine olive oil, minced garlic, lemon zest, and juice.
- Add in chopped rosemary, thyme, and chili flakes.
- Whisk them together until well combined.
- Place your Wagyu Picanha in a sealable bag or a container.
- Pour the marinade over the meat, ensuring it's fully coated.
- Seal the bag or cover the container, and let the magic happen in the fridge for about 2 hours. Note: Don't marinate for too long, as Wagyu's natural flavors are delicate. Over-marinating might overshadow them.
- Using a Rub
A good rub is like a magic dust that crisps to perfection, forming a glorious crust as you sear or grill the meat. The brilliance of kosher salt paired with black peppercorn can't be understated. But adding a few more spices can elevate the flavor even more.
Wagyu Picanha Rub Recipe:
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon freshly ground black peppercorn
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, for those who dare)
- In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients.
- Before you cook the Picanha, generously sprinkle the rub on both sides of the meat, patting it down to ensure it adheres well.
- Other Seasoning Options
For an even more enhanced flavor profile, consider adding herbs to your sous vide bath. Fresh thyme, rosemary, and garlic gently infuse their essence into the Wagyu. And once your meat is grilled to perfection, a final flourish of Guerande or Camargue sea salt adds that exquisite finishing touch, elevating every bite of your Wagyu Picanha to a gastronomic delight.
5 - Cooking Methods
Taking a culinary journey means exploring various paths. While the sous vide route is one avenue, you might prefer the road less traveled by, using traditional methods like smoking or baking. Here's how:
- On the Smoker
Smoking your Picanha Wagyu offers a whole new depth of flavor. Those smoky undertones can transform the profile of the meat, giving it a rustic touch.
- Prep: Ensure your Picanha is at room temperature.
- Wood Chips: Opt for milder wood chips. Apple or cherry woods are great choices for Wagyu as they impart a subtle smokiness without overpowering the meat's natural flavors.
- Heat: Preheat your smoker to 225°F (107°C).
- Smoke: Place the Picanha in the smoker and let it cook for about 2-3 hours or until it reaches an internal temperature of 125°F (52°C) for medium-rare.
- Rest: Allow it to rest for about 15 minutes before slicing.
- In the Oven
Using your oven can be just as rewarding, offering a consistent and controlled environment for your Wagyu.
- Prep: Allow the Picanha to sit out until it reaches room temperature.
- Oven Settings: Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C).
- Pan Prep: Place a rack inside a roasting pan or baking dish to allow heat circulation.
- Cook: Position the Picanha on the rack and bake for about 40-45 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 125°F (52°C) for medium-rare.
- Rest: Let the meat sit for 15 minutes to lock in the juices before slicing.
- Using a Skillet to Sear Your Sous Vide Picanha
A cast-iron skillet offers a flawless sear, giving your steak that crave-worthy crust.
- Heat: Place your skillet on high heat and let it become scorching hot. A drop of water should sizzle and evaporate immediately when it's ready.
- Oil: Add a splash of high smoke-point oil, like grapeseed or avocado oil.
- Sear: Lay your Picanha steak gently onto the skillet. It should sizzle on contact. Sear each side for about 2-3 minutes, turning only once to ensure a beautiful crust. If your Picanha is thick, sear the edges as well.
- Finishing Touches: For added flavor, you can toss in a knob of butter, a crushed garlic clove, and a sprig of rosemary or thyme during the final minute of searing. Tilt the skillet and spoon the melted butter over the steak repeatedly.
- Rest: Before diving in, allow the meat to rest for a few minutes. This lets the juices redistribute, ensuring every bite is succulent.
Regardless of the method chosen, remember, the journey's essence lies in the love and passion you pour into the preparation. Happy cooking, and bon appétit! 🍷🥩
6 - Cooking Tips
Mastering the art of steak is more than just grilling – it's about understanding the nuances that elevate a dish. Here's a deep dive into a few tips that can truly elevate your Picanha Wagyu experience:
- Dry Brining Your Steak
Think of dry brining as a spa treatment for your steak. It’s a relaxation technique that helps your meat achieve its most flavorful state.
- Salt Selection: Opt for kosher or sea salt due to its coarser grains.
- Application: Sprinkle a generous amount of salt evenly on all sides of the steak.
- Rest & Absorb: Place the steak on a wire rack set over a baking sheet to catch any drips. Let it chill out in the refrigerator uncovered for at least 2-4 hours. This resting period allows the salt to draw out the meat's natural juices and then reabsorb them, leading to a steak that's seasoned from within.
- How to Get the Perfect Doneness Using a Thermometer
Ditch the poke test and embrace the precision of a meat thermometer. It’s the secret weapon for perfection every time.
- Insert Correctly: Place the thermometer probe into the thickest part of the steak, avoiding fat or bone.
- Monitor Temperature: For a juicy medium-rare Picanha Wagyu, aim for an internal temperature of 129°F. But remember, everyone's preference is different:
- Rare: 120 to 125°F
- Medium: 140 to 145°F
- Safety Tip: Always ensure the thermometer is calibrated and clean before use.
- How to Rest Your Sous Vide Picanha Steaks and Slice Against the Grain
Patience post-grill is a virtue. Letting your steak take a breather ensures every bite is as succulent as the last.
- Resting: Once your steak is off the grill or pan, transfer it to a cutting board and tent it lightly with aluminum foil. This little nap allows the juices to settle, ensuring they stay in the steak and not on your plate.
- Observe the Grain: Look at your steak and notice the direction of the muscle fibers – that's the "grain."
- Slice: Using a sharp knife, slice perpendicular to the grain. This technique shortens the fibers, resulting in a steak that's easier to chew and packed with flavor.
Armed with these tips, you're well on your way to becoming a steak maestro! Every tweak, every added step, is a move towards perfection on a plate. Enjoy the journey, and most importantly, the delectable destination! 🥩🍷
7 - Storage Instructions For This Sous Vide Picanha Steaks
- In the Fridge: Cool the steak, then place it in an airtight container. It should stay delicious for up to 3 days.
- In the Freezer: Once cooled, wrap the steak in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.
- The Best Way to Reheat This Recipe: Thaw the steak and bring it to room temperature. Then, warm it in the oven at a low temperature until heated through.
8 - Side Dishes
Grilled picanha steak is a favorite of Brazilian steakhouses. This cut of meat is perfect for grilling or roasting. And it can be paired with a variety of seasonings, sauces, or side dishes. Here are some great side dishes for an authentic brazilian picanha meal:
Final Take Away About This Sous Vide Picanha Wagyu Recipe
Embarking on this culinary journey with Picanha Wagyu has been enlightening, showcasing the harmony of passion, precision, and palate. While this guide equips you with a solid foundation, remember that it's the personal touches and shared experiences that transform a dish from merely delicious to truly memorable. Trust your instincts, revel in the cooking process, and most of all, cherish the moments when you share these culinary masterpieces with loved ones. As we wrap up this guide, here's to every sizzle, every aroma, and every bite that tells a story. Cheers to the delicious adventures that await! 🍷🥩🌟
- 2 lbs. Snake River Farm wagyu picanha
For the Rub/Seasoning:
- 1 ½ tablespoon Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt
- 1 ½ tablespoon ground black peppercorn
For the Sear:
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
For the Sous Vide:
- 2 sprigs Herbs Fresh: Thyme, rosemary, and garlic For the sous vide bath
- 2 tablespoon butter For the sous vide bath
- 1 teaspoon Guerande OR Camargue sea salt (optional)
- Rinse the picanha and gently pat dry.
- With a sharp knife, trim the fat side slightly — just enough, but remember, this is where all that sweet fat and rich flavor come from.
- Show some love: sprinkle it generously with kosher salt and pepper.
- Slide it into a sous vide bag with your choice of herbs.
- Seal it up. Remember, we're locking in all those fantastic flavors.
- Set the Anova cooker for 24 hours at 131°F. This recipe is set for a tender texture and a MEDIUM-RARE cook (130°-135°F). If you like your meat rare/medium, adjust the target temperature as well to taste: Rare: 120 to 125 degrees F Medium: 140 to 145 degrees F If you like your meat more firm, I recommend lowering the cooking time to a minimum of 12 hours.
- Set your sous vide precision cooker to 129°F for a delightful medium-rare finish. This recipe is set for a tender texture and a MEDIUM-RARE cook. If you like your meat rare or medium, adjust the target temperature as well to taste: - Rare: 120 to 125 degrees F - Medium: 140 to 145 degrees F If you like your meat more firm, I recommend lowering the cooking time to a minimum of 12 hours.
- Immerse your picanha in its bath. Let it slow dance in there for a full 24 hours. The longer the time, the richer the flavor.
- Once it hits perfection, gently remove it and give it a cold bath using dry ice for about 20-30 minutes to help halt the cooking process.
- After 20-30 minutes, take the bag out of the ice bath, open and remove the meat, and discard the bag.
- With a paper towel, remove the thyme, the rosemary, and the garlic. Pat dry and brush with oil on all sides.
- Cut the roast lengthwise into three or 4 equal pieces of steak.
- Remove the fat cap.
- Roll them up like a jelly-roll, then secure the shape with a metal skewer so that all pieces stay in place.
- If not done already, brush the grill or the cast iron pan with olive oil.Place the skewers on the grill, and sear it on direct flame for 5-10 minutes on each side or until desired bark. Keep the lid open and turn it every minute or to make sure to not overcook. Watch out for flare ups.
- Remove the meat from the grill and place on a cutting board.
- Cover loosely for about 5 minutes.
- Slice picanha steaks and serve.
- For an extra touch of flavor, sprinkle with Guerande salt.
- Serve, relish, and get ready for the compliments.
Note on Avoiding Flare-Ups with PicanhaWhen grilling the succulent Picanha with its generous fat cap, flare-ups can be a common occurrence due to the dripping fat. But a bit of strategic grilling can ensure you savor every bite without any over-charring. Here’s how to go about it: Centralized Grilling for Flare-Up Control:
- Set Up Your Grill: Arrange your coal on either side of the grill, creating a central area devoid of direct heat.
- Use a Drip Tray: In this central zone, place a drip tray. This tray will catch the dripping fat, preventing it from reaching the coals and causing flare-ups.
- Position Your Picanha: Lay your Picanha steaks right above this drip tray. This way, the steaks get a consistent heat without direct flame contact, ensuring they cook evenly and safely.
Frequently Asked Questions
The picanha cut is a type of sirloin, and it comes from the top part of the sirloin. The top sirloin is located on the back of the cow, between the short loin and the tenderloin. It is a highly-prized and well-marbled cut, known for its flavor and tenderness.
Picanha is often used in Brazilian grilling (churrasco) or Argentinian asado cooking, and can be prepared using different methods - such as grilling on the BBQ or using sous vide cooking - to yield perfectly cooked picanha every time.
There is no one “right” way for cutting picanha. It all depends on the type of dish you are preparing and how large your picanha is. Some common ways to cut picanha include slicing it into steaks, cubing it for kebabs or fajitas, or roasting it whole for a roast. If in doubt, a good rule of thumb is to talk to an expert grill master or chef about the best way to cut picanha for the specific recipe you are trying to make. You can also look up various picanha recipes online for inspiration and ideas on how to best prepare this delicious cut of beef.
Picanha and top sirloin cap (or coulotte steak) are both cuts of beef from the same part of the cow. The main difference between them is that picanha has a thicker layer of fat, which helps it to stay moist and flavorful during cooking. Picanha is also more marbled than top sirloin cap, which makes it even more tender and juicy. On the other hand, top sirloin cap is leaner and has a more intense beefy flavor that some people prefer. So if you have a preference for either flavor or texture, picanha or top sirloin cap might be the right choice for you.