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Japanese Burgers with Wasabi Ketchup
Recipe adapted from The Japanese Grill (Ten Speed Press)
Yield: 4 servings
½ cup ketchup
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon wasabi paste
½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs), or regular dried breadcrumbs
¼ cup whole milk
½ pound ground sirloin beef
½ pound ground pork
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup finely chopped white onion
½ tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon salt
Sesame oil, for coating hands (about 2 tablespoons)
1. Make the wasabi ketchup: Whisk together the ketchup, soy sauce and wasabi in a bowl. Set aside.
2.Make the burgers: In a small bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs and the milk and let sit until the breadcrumbs absorb all the liquid, about 5 minutes. In a large bowl, combine the soaked breadcrumbs, beef, pork, black pepper, onion, soy sauce and salt. Knead the mixture until it becomes sticky and binds together, then divide into 4 equal parts.
3. Lightly coat your hands with sesame oil. Using your palms, roll each portion of the meat into a ball, then pat the ball ﬂat, shifting it from hand to hand, to form a ½-inch-thick patty. Press down to make an indentation in the center of the patty. Repeat with the remaining three portions of meat. Place the completed patties on a foilcovered cookie sheet.
4.Preheat a grill to medium. Grill the burgers until they're nicely browned, about 12 minutes, ﬂipping twice. These burgers have to cook completely because of the pork:There should be no pink in the middle, but they'll still be incredibly juicy. Let the burgers rest for 2 minutes. Spoon the wasabi ketchup on top and serve over rice or on buns.
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