Recipe: Gyuniku No Tataki (Beef Tataki) from Tokyo Local »

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Beef Tataki from Tokyo Local by Caryn and Brendan Liew

Beef Tataki from Tokyo Local by Caryn and Brendan Liew [©Smith Street Books ]

<i>Tokyo Local</i> by Caryn and Brendan Liew


In Tokyo Local, Caryn and Brendan Liew extol the city's amazing array of street foods and bring this food-lovers' paradise into your kitchen with over 70 tantalising recipes.

The book explores the dishes that make up the city’s culinary history, from old to modern, but all of it achievable in your own home, and light years away from ‘simple’ sushi that pervades the West.

In her review, Robyn says "Honestly, if this book alone doesn’t make you want to go to Tokyo, nothing will" so try this recipe for Gyuniku No Tataki and see if there are rumblings of travel plans!


Gyuniku No Tataki

Tataki means ‘to pound’, but in beef tataki, the beef is simply seared and finely sliced. It is then lightly marinated in the pan juices and served with a citrusy ponzu sauce and a little wasabi. Usually found in izakaya as one of many small dishes, beef tataki is best enjoyed as an entrée.

Ingredients (serves 4 as an entrée)

  • 1 × 250 g (9 oz) beef eye round
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil, for frying
  • 60 ml (2 floz/¼ cup) red wine
  • 60 ml (2 floz/¼ cup) soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 daikon (Japanese radish), grated
  • ½ bunch spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced
  • grated wasabi, to serve
  • Ponzu, to serve (recipe below)


  1. Season the beef with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the oil in a cast iron or steel frying pan over high heat.When the pan is very hot, add the beef; be careful, as the oil may spit.
  3. Cook the beef on all sides until very well coloured, then remove the pan from the heat, setting it aside for the sauce. Remove any excess oil from the beef with paper towel, then transfer the beef to a plate and refrigerate until chilled through to make it easier to slice.
  4. Return the frying pan to the heat and add the wine, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any beef stuck to the base of the pan.Cook the wine until it has been reduced to a sticky glaze, then add the soy sauce, mirin, rice vinegar and lemon juice. Stir until just combined, strain into a bowl and set aside.
  5. Thinly slice the beef and dress with the pan juices. Squeeze any excess liquid from the grated daikon and garnish the beef with the daikon and spring onions. Serve with the grated wasabi and ponzu on the side.


Ponzu is a delicious citrusy and salty dressing used in many dishes. While pre-made ponzu can be purchased from Asian or Japanese supermarkets, it is incredibly easy to make from scratch.

Home-made ponzu also tastes different from batch to batch depending on the citrus used, making it just that little bit more interesting than ready-made versions.

Ingredients  makes 295 ml (10 floz)

  • 125 ml (4 floz/½ cup) soy sauce
  • 125 ml (4 floz/½ cup) citrus juice (such as yuzu, lemon, lime or orange, or a combination), plus the reserved skins of the citrus fruit
  • 1¾ tablespoons mirin
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon katsuobushi (dried skipjack tuna flakes)
  • 1 × 3 cm (1¼ in) piece konbu (dried kelp)


Combine all of the ingredients,including the citrus skins, in an airtight jar with a lid, ensuring that all of the solids are immersed in the liquid. Allow to steep in a cool, dark place overnight, then transfer to the refrigerator until required.

Ponzu is best after 1 week, but can be used after 1 day, and keeps in the refrigerator indefinitely.


This recipe is from Tokyo Local by Caryn Liew and Brendan Liew and reproduced here with the kind permission of the publisher.

Tokyo Local – Cult Recipes from the Streets that Make the City by Caryn Liew and Brendan Liew is published by Smith Street Books and distributed by Simon & Shuster (Melbourne, May 2018; hc; 224 pp) and retails in Australia for RRP A$39.99.

Read Robyn's full review of Tokyo Local »

And the press release »

See links below for further recipes.


  • japan-all (JP)

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August 01st, 2018
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