Hambāgu (Hamburger Steak)

This dish is similar to Salisbury steak as it is smothered in savory gravy, but should not be confused with hamburgers that are served on a bun (hambāgā). You can make meatballs with the Hambāgu recipe, which are perfect for lunches or as an appetizer!

Serves: 4Hands-on: 20 minutesTotal: 30 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 4


  • 1⁄2 cup panko or soft white bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp. milk
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 3⁄4 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1⁄4 lb. ground pork
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1⁄2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1⁄4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp. cooking oil
  • 1⁄2 cup red wine
  • 1⁄4 cup ketchup
  • 1⁄4 cup Worcestershire sauce or tonkatsu sauce


  • In a small bowl combine panko and milk. Let stand for 5 minutes, or until milk is completely absorbed.
  • In a large skillet over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon butter. Once it foams, add onion and cook, stirring constantly until softened and translucent, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
  • In a large bowl combine beef, pork, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and egg with the softened panko and onions. Using your hands mix gently until everything is well combined.
  • Divide mixture into 4 oval-shaped patties. Toss each patty back and forth between your hands 10 times to release the air in the meat. Place the patties on a plate and press your thumb gently into the center of each patty to form a slight dent.
  • Heat the skillet over medium heat. Once the skillet is hot add oil. When the oil shimmers add meat patties. Cook for 5 minutes per side, or until each side is dark golden brown. Cover the pan with a lid and cook for 5 minutes more, or until patties reach an internal temperature of 155°F. Transfer patties to a plate and loosely cover with foil while you prepare the sauce.
  • With the skillet over medium heat add the wine. Cook, scraping the bottom of the pan to lift any brown bits of meat, until the wine is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add remaining butter, ketchup, and tonkatsu sauce and cook until sauce thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Pour sauce over the patties and serve.