Turning Japanese I: Teriyaki burgers

I have been putting this off for a while. I was going to include all the Japanese food I cooked in one post and then I realised I would have to spread it out. You see, while I was in Argentina I cooked a few Japanese dishes. I have been studying the language for some years now and it was only natural I got hooked on Japanese cuisine. There are so many advantages to it but I guess the main one would be how healthy it is. You would eat a bowl full of healthy stuff and end up happily satisfied. No need for junk food then!

One of the things I did was teriyaki (照り焼き) sauce. The recipe I used yielded quite a lot so I used it in several dishes: chicken and pork teriyaki and also, on these fantastic home-made burgers.

I first tasted these in Tokyo, where they would be a popular take-away choice. Even MacDonald’s have them on their Japanese menus.

The word teriyaki derives from the noun teri (照り), which refers to a shine or luster given by the sugar content in the tare, and yaki (焼き?), which refers to the cooking method of grilling or broiling. Traditionally the meat is dipped in or brushed with sauce several times before and during cooking.

The tare is traditionally made by mixing and heating soy sauce, sake or mirin, and sugar or honey. The sauce is boiled and reduced to the desired thickness, then used to marinate meat which is then grilled or broiled. Sometimes ginger is added, and the final dish may be garnished with green onions.

Teriyaki burger (照り焼きバーガー)

For the burgers:

1/2 kg mince meat

chopped garlic, parsley and white onion (be creative)

sweet paprika to taste

chili powder

sage and thyme (I used dried) a pinch

salt and pepper

1 tsp. mustard

a little paprika oil (recipe in a later post)

about 1 or 2 slices white bread soaked in milk

Teriyaki sauce:

2tbsp soy sauce mixed with 2 tbsp mirin or white wine with sugar and 1 tbsp water.

Mix all the ingredients for the sauce and leave it to one side.

Mix all the ingredients for the burgers, shape them and place them on a slightly oiled tray in the fridge. (If you omit this step, the burgers will fall apart when you cook them).

When you’re ready to cook them have the teriyaki sauce ready. I only had a grill at home which had the heat on the top only. Cook the burgers on one side and, as you turn them over, begin basting them with the sauce, all the way though until they’re done.

I find it that the sauce caramelizes and thickens as you baste the burgers, no need to cook the sauce previously.

どうぞめしあがれ (douzo meshiagare!)  🙂

I dedicate this (the first of many) posts to my friend Nora, in Japan.


2 thoughts on “Turning Japanese I: Teriyaki burgers

  1. Te contesté en el comentario de mi blog pero lo vuelvo a hacer aquí. Muchísimas gracias Gabriela.
    Cuando lo prepare en mi casa, te cuento cómo me salió 🙂
    Un abrazo y “ganbatte” 🙂

  2. Hola Nora! 🙂

    Que lindo verte de visita por mi blog!
    Espero que te salgan ricas y sobre todo, que sean parecidas a las que se comen por alla.

    Te mando un abrazo fuerte desde Londres!


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