Thursday, June 7, 2012

Hambagu ハンバーグ Japanese Style Hamburger Steak With Side Dishes

I was inspired to cook all things Japanese after the delicious Japanese home cooked meal (click here) and Hanbagu was one of the few Japanese meals I cooked in the weeks that followed.

I adore yohshoku or western food done the Japanese way... these dishes often have quirky sounding names and equally quirky way of blending the best of the east and the west.

Apart from tonkatsu (another popular yohshoku dish) and Japanese curry, hambagu also appears regularly on the tummies' table. This cheap and cheerful meal is easy to prepare and will sure to impress the harshest critic at home. I served the hambagu with grilled rice cakes and a salad of green beans and carrot dressed with a sesame paste dressing.

P.S its called hambaga when serves with burger buns. For a halal version, use only beef mince.

serves 4 as a one dish meal
for the hambagu patties you'll need;
500 g of beef mince (do not get the super lean grade)
500 g of pork mince
1 onion, chopped and cook with a little oil until soften
1 cup of breadcrumbs
1/4 cup of milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp of ground nutmeg
salt and black pepper to taste
oil for cooking
pickled ginger to serve

for the sauce;
1/2 cup of dry red wine
1/2 cup of tomato ketchup
1/2 cup of tonkatsu sauce
1/3 cup of beef or chicken stock

for the salad;
300 g of green beans, thinly sliced at an angle, blanched, refreshed and drained
2 carrots, peel and cut into thin batons to match the bean slices, blanched, refreshed and drained
3 tbs of toasted sesame seeds

for the salad dressing;
3 tbs of Japanese soy
3 tbs of sesame paste or tahini
3 tbs of mirin
1/2 tbs of sesame oil

for the rice cakes;
3 cups of freshly cooked Japanese rice
3 to 4 tbs of sushi vinegar
1 tbs of shichimi togarashi (seven flavour chili powder)
1 tbs of black sesame seeds

Place all ingredients for the patties in a large bowl and mix well. Divide patties into 10 equal portion before turning them into neat patties.

Fry patties with a little oil until golden on both sides (3 minutes/side) then cover the pan and reduce the heat to the lowest and cook for a further 10 minutes, all you might want to finish off the cooking in a preheated oven for the same duration.

For the sauce - Place the red wine, tomato ketchup and tonkatsu sauce in the pan and cook until thicken and syrupy.

Dress salad with the dressing and mix well, sprinkle with some toasted sesame seeds and set aside.

For the rice cakes - Place 3 cups of freshly cooked Japanese rice in a shallow bowl, add sushi vinegar and mix well. Add black sesame seeds and some shichimi togarashi, when the rice is cool enough to handle mould into little rice patties.

Grill rice cakes until lightly charred.

Serve hambagu with grilled rice cake, the bean and carrot salad and a little pickled ginger on the side.

I had the leftover hambagu and grilled rice cake with a sunny side up.



  1. I had hambagu once but it was served with potato, I much prefer your version :) Love it!

  2. Very nice combination you have there! The Sunday lunch looked fantastic and I can't wait for your recreation of the dishes!

  3. Lol at hambagu :) I think my boys will like this!

  4. I can't get good Japanese food here! So this is new to me, but looks wonderful.

  5. wah! this is so yummy. Must try! thanks for sharing :)


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