Serves 3

If you ever plan to visit Sendai-Japan, one very famous food you can’t miss is Gyūtan (牛タン). Gyūtan was created when Sano Keishirō, the owner of a yakitori restaurant in Sendai, opened a new restaurant that served cow tongue dishes in 1948. This restaurant was called Tasuke (太助), and is still considered one of the best places to eat gyūtan in Sendai. Sano decided to open this restaurant to use cow tongues and tails left over by occupation forces, which were stationed in Sendai after Japan was defeated in World War II (Wikipedia).

That’s a little history, now thanks to bloggers like you and me spreading the word via the internet, the most popular visited gyutan restauran is Rikyu. I think its because the taste is so western. Some other restaurant marinate it with heavy miso paste that you can really taste it in even after the grilling. I challenge myself to be able to prepare it at home. I stumble upon a recipe from “Tess Japanese Kitchen” but adjusted some preparation methods. The result was wonderful. When I made this, the smell when all over the place and even to the apartment in front of me. The next day, all my neighbors was having yakiniku for dinner. Ha..ha.. the smell is so tempting. Believe me, veal tounge in Sendai is so expensive that buying one tounge=5 kg of cow’s meat. It’s worth to try.

1 veal tongue
2 tbs sesame oil
1 large green onion
2 tbs rice/apple vinegar
2 tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Japanese soyu
2 lt water

grilled marinate:
1 tbs soyu
1 tbs oil
½ tsp chili powder

How to prepare:
-boil tongue with salt for 30 minutes, take out and slice the peripheral of the tongue only meat left
-prepare again water and boil the clean tongue with sesame oil, green onion, vinegar, sugar, salt, soyu for another 30 minutes
-take out tongue slice into thin piece and slice again the sides to grill faster
-prepare soyu, sesame oil, oil and chili pepper marinate
-dip into the marinate and grill
-toss it back in the soyu mixture before grilling the other side
-repeat the process until cooked
-serve with rice, miso shiro and cabbage salad/pickles/soup

5 thoughts on “Gyu-tan

  1. I have eaten at several tongue grilling restaurants in Japan, including ones in Sendai.
    I love ultra thinly sliced and grilled tongue like yours. I also make variety of cooked/boiled (beef or lamb) tongues as well. Boild ones are soft (like well cooked stew meat) and great with varieties of gravies/sauces. Grilled or boiled, tongue is a superb delicacy!

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