Japanese Steak in Roasted Sesame Seed Marinade

By in category: Japan

steak-in-sesame-marinadeJapanese cuisine continues to surprise me, especially when encountering less well known recipes – OK, that’s a rather self-fulfilling prophesy when it’s said like that, but I hope you understand what I mean?

I’d never tried steak done in a Japanese style, but having come across this gem, I’m loving it.

If you’re bored with a good old-fashioned pepper-steak, or sacrificing it to the charcoals in the garden, why not perk up your steak with this delicious Japanese recipe:


  • 2 tablespoons white Japanese sesame seeds
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 3 cm piece fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce*
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
  • 500g scotch fillet, cut into 4 steaks
  • 3 spring onions, to garnish
  • 1 tablespoon oil

Dipping Sauce:

  • 4 cm piece fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon shichimi togarashi
  • 1/2 cup Japanese soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons dashi granules
  • 2 tablespoons water


  1. Roast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan over moderately low heat for 2 minutes, shaking the pan constantly, until the seeds begin to pop.
  2. Crush the roasted seeds in a mortar and pestle.
  3. Place the crushed sesame seeds, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sake and sugar in a bowl and whisk until the sugar has dissolved.
  4. Place the steaks in a shallow dish; spoon the marinade over the top and marinate for 30 minutes.
  5. To make the Dipping Sauce:
  6. Cut the ginger lengthways into very fine strips about 4 cm long.
  7. Place the ginger, shichimi togarashi, soy sauce, dashi, and water in a small bowl and whisk lightly until well combined.
  8. Cut the spring onions lengthways into very fine strips about 4 cm long.
  9. Place the strips in a bowl of iced water and leave until they are crisp and curled; drain.
  10. Lightly brush the oil over the steaks and then grill or fry them for about 4 to 6 minutes on each side — don’t overcook or the steaks will become very tough.
  11. Set the steaks aside for 5 minutes before cutting them into diagonal slices. Arrange the slices on serving plates and then drizzle over a little of the Dipping Sauce.
  12. Garnish with the spring onion curls and serve with steamed rice and the remaining Dipping Sauce.

*(e.g. Kikkoman Soy Sauce)

That’s Cookin’

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