Friday, September 5, 2008


I, along with people almost everywhere, adore Japanese food. Along with the huge variety in this great culinary country is their take on Western food - and thus Yoshoku is born - basically Japanese interpretations of popular Western dishes (think hayashi raisu for English beef stew and corokke for the French croquettes). I particularly love the Japanese hamburger steak or wafu hambaaga - and here is a simple recipe for it. This is delicious eaten on its own or with steamed rice. I chose to be a little decadent here and served it with a side of spaghetti with a homemade tomato sauce.
350g beef mince (I like to buy a rump steak and grind it up myself)
200g pork mince
1 brown onion minced
1/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4 cup low fat milk
1 egg beaten
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Mix panko and milk and set aside. Fry onions on medium heat in canola oil until lightly browned. Set aside till cool.
2. In a large bowl, combine beef, pork, cooled onion, egg , salt, pepper and panko mixture. With your hands, combine the mixture by folding thorougly. Throw the combined mixture back into the bowl a few times to remove any air bubbles. Divide into four patties about 1.5 inches thick each.
3. Fry patties in lightly buttered pan until a brown crust forms on each side - approximately 5 minutes on each side. Add 1 tablespoon of sake into pan and cover. Let this steam for about two minutes.
4. I must admit I use a cheat's version of the sauce at this stage - S&B (a household japanese brand) makes an instant powdered demi-glace sauce (only the Japanese would dare to do something like that). Otherwise, I have also served this with a teriyaki sauce (combine 2 tablespoons sake, 2 tablespoons mirin, 1.5 tablespoons japanese soya sauce and 2 teaspoons sugar for each pattie and simmer) which is equally good.
5. Of course, the all important fried egg sunny side up completes this dish.


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