Sunday, March 13, 2011

Hamburg Steak, a Japanese Feast!

My heart goes out to everyones family and friends in Japan that were impacted by the Earthquake this past week.  Things like this really make you appreciate the small things in life, as well as our friends and family!  One thing that I love about Japanese culture is their never ending fighting spirit and their strength to get through whatever life hands them.  These concepts are called chikara (inner strength) and gamman suru (to endure).  Our friends in Japan have a long road ahead of them, and while I'm certain that their fighting spirit will help them get through the tough days ahead, there are so many ways that we can help as well.  Global Giving, the Red Cross and countless other organizations are providing easy ways for us to reach out a friendly hand.  On that note, what better than a Japanese Feast to inspire us to help out our friends in Japan, and remind us how fortunate we are in our daily lives.

In Japanese cuisine they have many "Western" dishes, known as yoshoku.  Over the years these dishes have become classic comfort foods in many Japanese homes and restaurants.  Often referred to as Hamburg or Hambagaa, this dish is a Japanese spin on the classic Salisbury Steak/meatloaf with gravy.  There are many variations and sauces that are popular in Japan.  My friend LT came over and we made one with onion gravy and some grated daikon and ponzu!  
Hello Kitty loves this meal!
Hamburg Steak
adapted from my friend LT

1 lb ground beef (or mixture of beef and pork)
1/2 cup panko (japanese bread crumbs)
4 Tbsp milk
1 egg
1 small onion, diced
olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
pinch of nutmeg

Onion Gravy
1/3rd of the cooked onion (from above)
1 1/2 Tbsp soy sayce
1 Tbsp mirin
1 clove garlic, grated
1 1/2 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup water

1.  Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan on high heat.  Add in minced onions and cook for 2-3 minutes, reduce to medium and cook for another 5-6 minutes.  Once the onions are slightly brown, set aside and remove from heat.  *It is important to let the onions cool, if you combine with the meat while they are still hot it will change the texture of the patty*

2.  Knead meat with salt, pepper and nutmeg until it reaches a sticky texture.  In a separate bowl add milk and panko together.  Once combined add in panko mixture, 2/3 of the cooked onion mixture and the egg. 

3.  Divide meat into 4-5 sections and rub olive oil on your hands.  Shape meat into a ball, tossing from hand to hand to remove air from mixture.  Shape the ball into an oval and indent the center before placing into a hot pan with olive oil.  *This allows for a faster cooking time and ensures that the meat cooks evenly*

4.  Fry till golden on both sides and add 1/2 cup water to pan.  Cover the pan and allow the mixture to steam and cook until majority of the water is evaporated.  *If your lid doesn't have a hole for the steam to escape, leave the lid slightly ajar or use a piece of foil over the pan. *  Remove hamburg from pan.

Making the Gravy

1.  Using the pan that you just cooked the hamburg in, add water, soy sauce, mirin and already cooked onion.  Cook until the gravy comes to a slight boil.  Add in butter and grated garlic.  Cook until butter is completely melted, stirring occasionally. 

2.  Spoon gravy over the hamburg steak.

This great as is and goes well with hot steamed rice and some steamed veggies.  Other additional toppings to your hamburg steak are grated daikon and ponzu sauce (Japanese citrus based sauce). Personally I love it with the ponzu and grated daikon!

LT and I ate this with some steamed rice (brown and white mixture), spinach and a yummy tomato ginger salad.  Then to top off our Japanese feast we also had some yummy chocolate mochi that we baked up as well.  I'll post the tomato ginger salad and the chocolate mochi recipes later this week!


Our Eyes Eat First said...

thanks for sharing this low carb recipe : j

Kate @ said...

I love that juicy hamburger! especially with some caramelized onions on top... delish!

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