Tag Archives: minced beef

Japanese Hamburger

This is based on a dish I used to have at a restaurant in Tokyo and loved!  You don’t technically have to serve it in the foil parcels as I have but it does give the meat time to take up a little of the flavour of the sauce and you can get on with other things while you leave them in the oven so it’s a good prep ahead then pop it in the oven meal.  This was usually served with a baked potato but I chose to have chips tonight as I was in the mood.  I’ve also had the burger wrapped in bacon and served with a different sauce or may be no sauce but I can’t for the life of me remember!  I’m working on it. 

This is a good basic hamburger recipe too and I’m sure would make an excellent burger in a bun on its own.  I love Japanese  style Western food.  So often they take a staple Western food and do wonderful things with it that we would never have thought to do because we’re so used to doing something particular.  Although I am informed that this is similar to a Salisbury Steak in America.  What I do know is it’s delicious!

I’m dying of cold at the moment so if anything doesn’t make sense here drop me a line and I’ll fix in once I am able to breathe and think again!

Makes 6

For the burger:
1 small onion, finely chopped
500g minced beef
200g sausage meat
100g breadcrumbs
1 egg
1/2 tsp ground or freshly grated nutmeg
pepper to taste

For the sauce:
150g baby button mushrooms, sliced
red wine*
1 beef stock cube made up into stock*
3 tbsp ketchup
corn flour

– First lightly fry the onion in a little oil until soft.  Allow to cool a little. 
– Put everything in a bowl and mix it together with your hand. 
– Divide the mixture roughly into 6. 
– Gather a portion of the meat in your hand.  Roll into a ball then throw the ball forcefully back and forth in your hands to force out the air and flatten it into a patty. 
– Gently shape the patty to a circle and create a small hollow so the patty is thinner in the middle.  (This allows you to get a flat burger as it compensates for any swelling during cooking.)
– Place the patties on a large plate or chopping board and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, preferably about an hour. 

– Melt a small knob of butter in a frying pan and fry the mushrooms until just browning.  Set aside. 
– Sprinkle the burgers with a pinch of salt and prepare the foil sheets. 
– Fry the burgers in a large frying pan or griddle.  Give about 4 minutes each side.  Don’t move the burger about once you’ve placed it in the pan until it’s time to turn it or it will fall apart. 
– Place the burger in the centre of the sheet of foil and top with a spoonful of mushrooms. 

– Deglaze the pan with red wine (tip it in and scrape off any cooked on bits). 
– Add the stock and reduce until starting to thicken. 
– Add the ketchup and stir in continue to reduce. 
– If necessary add a little cornflour slaked in a little water to thicken the sauce.  It needs to be quite viscous slow moving. (Make sure to taste the sauce as it can need a little more ketchup to cut the saltiness of the stock cube.) 
– Pour a little sauce over each burger.

– Fold the foil up into a tent and fold together the edges to seal.  Then fold in the sides to seal those. 

– Place the parcels on a baking tray and place in the oven at around gas mark 5 for 10-15 minutes until everything is piping hot again.  (If preparing ahead cook for around 30 minutes to ensure food is piping hot all through.)
– When you’re ready simply put the parcel on a plate to serve. 

* I only cooked sauce for 1 tonight so I can’t speak as to actual quantities.  I just poured!

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Filed under Japanese, Mains, Moderately easy

Chilli Con Carne

I think my dad has been cooking this Chilli Con Carne recipe since before he met mum!  The original recipe comes from this ancient ’70s St Michael’s cook book but it’s one of those family dishes that no longer needs a recipe, we just get on with it.  I like this recipe as it’s a nice, tasty and warming way of getting more pulses in my diet and I’m trying to get away from eating so much pasta so rice makes an excellent staple carb alternative.   My dad’s a bit of a spice maniac it has to be said.  Back in his army days he once drank coffee with Tabasco in it and declared it to be delicious!  I, however, am not so fond of chilli, I like a bit of spice, sure, but I like to be able to taste the food that comes with it and noone likes to eat a meal with their nose running constantly.  So spicy food is always a bit of a compromise in our family.  We aim for somewhere in the middle and I cool mine down with yoghurt or creme fraiche and dad adds Tabasco to his. 

Not the best photo, it's all a bit white!

Serves 4

1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
750g minced beef
1 tsp chilli powder
1 chilli, chopped (either leave this out if you’re not a fan of spice or put more in if you’re mental!)
1x400g tin chopped tomatoes
150ml beef stock
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp sugar
1x400g tin red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

– Heat a few tbsp oil in a large pan.  Add the onion and garlic and fry until soft. 
– Add the minced beef, chilli powder and chilli.  Cook until browned, stirring occasionally. 
– Add the tomatoes, beef stock, tomato puree and sugar and stir until well combined. 
– Put a lid on the pan and simmer on a low heat for 30 minutes, stirring a few times. *
– Add the beans and cook for another 5 minutes. 
– Serve with basmati rice

*Normally we cook it up to this point early in the day or evening then leave it standing until dinner time when we heat it up again then add the beans for the final 5 minutes.

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Filed under Easy, Mains, Uncategorized

Spaghetti and Meatballs

A staple meal in our house.  The recipe varies a little each time I make it but this is tonight’s recipe!  There’s not much to say about it really, it’s a simple warm filling year round meal. 

Serves 4 (with enough for seconds ;o) )

750g minced beef
6 thick cheap pork sausages*
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
herbes de provence
2x400g tins chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp ketchup
~200g mushrooms, sliced

– In a large bowl mix together the minced beef the insides of the sausages (discard the skins), half the onion and 1 of the cloves of garlic along with 2 tbsp herbes de provence and salt and pepper to taste.  Get in there with you hands!
– Shape the mixture into balls with your hands and place them on a floured plate or chopping board. 
– Lightly dust with flour and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes, preferably in the fridge. 
– In a very large deep frying pan brown the meatballs, in batches if necessary. 
– Once browned on both sides tip in the tinned tomatoes with a quarter of a can of water.  Add the tomato puree, ketchup and mushrooms as well as another tbsp of herbes de provence. 
– Gently stir the sauce to mix in the space between the meatballs and poke the mushrooms down into the liquid. 
– Put on a lid and leave for 15 minutes until the sauce is bubbling. 
– Take the lid off and  continue to simmer for another 45 minutes on a gentle heat stirring occasionally. 
– Serve on top of spaghetti all covered in cheese!

*Better yet use a pack of sausage meat, preferably from a butcher, rather than already made sausages.  You will notice such a difference if you do.  Alas it was a thrown together meal tonight so no sausage meat.

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Filed under Easy, Mains