Tofu is well known in the world. You’ve probably made something with tofu. What do you usually make?
Today, I’m going to introduce a Japanese style burger which includes tofu. I’ve recently known that the Japanese so-called “hamburger” hambagu is different from a hamburger steak. I asked my American friend who knows about Japan very well what I should call this. He recommended me to say ”tofu hambagu” just like we call it. According to him, Japanese hambagu is more like a Salisbury steak than a hamburger steak. However, it’s not exactly the same as a Salisbury steak.
Ordinary Japanese homemade hambagu contains ground pork and beef, bread crumbs soaked in milk, chopped onions, salt and pepper as seasonings. Japanese hambagu is juicy and fluffy because of these ingredients. It’s very popular for kids.
The combination of using ground beef and pork together is more common than just using beef or pork. Pre-mixed ground beef and pork are always sold at the markets. This is just the Japanese tendency. You can use either one for this tofu burger depending on your liking.
Preparation of tofu
Tofu has a lot of moisture. Drain excess liquid beforehand.
Wrap the tofu with a kitchen towel. Put a flat plate or a cutting board on the tofu and leave it for 20 to 30 minutes. This process is important when you cook tofu.
I use shiso leaves and grated daikon radish as a garnish. Both are very common garnishes in Japanese cuisine.
Shiso leaf is a representative of Japanese herbs. It’s widely used and goes well with many different type of foods. The flavor of shiso is similar to basil as they are the same species. It’s also used for Japanese style spaghetti. “I love them!”
Grated daikon radish is also used for many kinds of dishes such as tempura, grilled fish and steaks. Daikon radish helps refresh your mouth when you eat fatty food. When you grate daikon radish, use the part near the leaves. This part is hard and sweet, so it’s good for making grated daikon. On the contrary, the end part tastes spicy and bitter, so it’s not good to eat raw. This part is usually used in a miso soup or pickles.
When I use grated daikon radish for tofu burgers, I always serve it with ponzu. Ponzu is a very common Japanese condiment contains citrus, vinegar, soy sauce, mirin, and dashi. It looks like soy sauce but it sour and flavorful. Ponzu can be made at home but it’s more common to buy bottled ponzu on the market.
My daughter doesn’t like tofu. However, she didn’t notice that this burger included tofu the first time she tried it. She enjoyed eating this tofu humbagu as her favorite. If your family tends to only eat meat, it would be worth trying this healthy burger trick!
Tried this recipe?
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I look forward to seeing your dish!
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