The Pepper Lunch franchise started in Ofuna, Kanagawa by Kunio Ichinose in 1994. Started out small, but since then, the franchise has reached global recognition as many can simply recognize the popular dish that is their mainstay, beef pepper rice. Their beef pepper rice consist of a mound of rice surrounded with beef slices drizzled in amakuchi sauce, and topped with green onions, corn, and black pepper. It is a very aesthetic dish that will not fail to amaze your taste buds as well.
To be honest, I’ve never had pepper lunch at one of their location. Like I have always wanted to give it a try, but never really had the chance to. So I did the next best thing, I made it at home from scratch. And it wasn’t bad, but now I can imagine why there is so much hype behind the pepper lunch. It’s really good for how simple and inexpensive this dish is. It’s just rice with slices of beef, seasoned with honey brown sauce, a really good amount of corn and green onions, a shower of black pepper and a slice of butter. Easy enough!
The core of beef pepper lunch is the rice, the beef, and the sauce. The rice can be leftover rice that have been stored in the fridge. This is perfect type of rice as it is not mushy in comparison to freshly cooked rice. In terms of the choice of protein, it can just come down to preference. As long as it is thinly sliced, it will be perfect for pepper lunch. (Note: Shabu Shabu/Sukiyaki beef beef slices can be found at Asian Markets) You can also prepare it at home by slicing up frozen meats.
There is typically two types of sauces that is used to season the dish. Amakuchi sauce, also known as honey brown sauce, consist of a honey and soy sauce combination. Karakuchi sauce is a garlic and soy sauce combination. I personally like the the hint of sweetness that compliments the peppery flavor from the black pepper, so I went with the classic karakuchi sauce with this recipe.
- 1 lb beef ribeye slices
- half an onion
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1.5-2 cups leftover rice
- black pepper (to taste)
Amakuchi sauce (Honey Brown Sauce)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 fried egg
- 1/4 cup corn
- green onions
- garlic chips
- Start by preparing the measurements of all the ingredients. Cut the onion into slices. Chop up the green onion into garnish.
- Add all the prepared ingredients for the sauce into a bowl. Mix thoroughly.
- Start by adding the cooking oil and sautéing the onion for 2-3 minutes or until it becomes transparent.
- Then add the bowl of rice on top of the onions. Then add the slices of beef and cook for 2-3 minutes on high heat.
- Add the Amakuchi sauce. Make sure to pour the sauce all over the meat. Have this cook for an additional 5 minutes.
- Start adding your corn, butter, green onions, and black pepper. Add more black pepper if needed. Then mix it all up and cook until the meat is not red anymore. Top it off with crispy garlic chips and a fried egg. Enjoy!