Wasabi Pepper Sauce

…If memory serves me right, this is the very first recipe I tried from Nobu: The Cookbook.  I made this sauce in order to  make my very first toro tartar with caviar using salmon.  The sauce recipe can be found here –


Soy, light soy, wasabi

Like this entry mentions:


I too found the sauce a little on the hot side.

Since the arrival of Nobu Now, I tend to follow that version of the recipe when I make this sauce.  Basically, the wasabi in that sauce has been toned down by 1  tablespoons,and the regular soy and low-sodium/light soy sauce has each been increased by 1  tablespoon.  There has also been a 1 oz reduction in the amount of dashi used.  Nobu West’s version tends to be the same (4 times smaller).

2 tablespoons Of Wasabi Powder

Wasabi powder to paste with 4 tablespoons of water

3 Tablespoons light soy, 3 tablespoons regular soy with wasabi paste

Adding soy sauces to the mix

dashi for the sauce

Adding dashi for the sauce

black pepper for the sauce

Adding black pepper to the sauce

But how to use this sauce with a cooked dish other than what’s in Nobu: The Cookbook? During an omakase dinner at Matsuhisa, LA on 27 Dec 2007, I got my answer when I was served a crispy fillo wrapped ama-ebi with grilled shishito  and garlic wasabi pepper sauce.  As it would turn out, Nobu Now itself would have the recipe for the garlic wasabi pepper sauce (paired with grilled chicken). So I chose to make  a NY Strip steak and haricots vert with the garlic wasabi pepper sauce as the very first dinner for my fiancee-now-wife  (…and she was very happy). Problem is,  Nobu Now doesn’t give much guidance on how much black pepper to add. Fortunately, Nobu West does – it’s version uses 1 teaspoon of black pepper.  This suggests that 4 teaspoons of black pepper be added to Nobu Now‘s batch of wasabi pepper.  Since I find I usually use 4 tablespoons of sauce per serving, I heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil (my wife isn’t very fond of heated butter) with 1.5 teaspoons of grated  garlic and  add 9 tablespoons of the wasabi pepper sauce to make the garlic wasbabi pepper sauce.

Grated Garlic For Sauce

Sauteeing garlic in olive oil (as opposed to clarified butter)

Garlic wasabi pepper sauce, just heated through

Salmon, sauteed cabbage, grilled onigiri, garlic wasabi pepper sauce

In fact – here’s a version of the same idea as served at Nobu Melbourne:


(and that’s clearly garlic in the sauce atop the steak).

It’s been awhile since I’ve done this sauce with dashi; when I make it,  my preference is to replace the dashi with 3 oz of nikiri (evaporated) sake.

Update (13 Nov 2011): My wife asked me whether I could reduce the bite/heat of the black pepper in the wasabi pepper sauce in a dish for dinner tonight. So instead of 4 teaspoons of black pepper, I dropped it back to 3 teaspoons of black pepper.

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