We’re easing into the long dark of winter here in Scotland. The gloom doesn’t quite hit until after the holidays because we’re all battling against it with Christmas lights right now, but it won’t be long before it’s dark both when you arrive at and when you leave work. This is the time of year when I wonder why I ever left Hawaii.
In Honolulu, we would have started making more trips to Diamond Head Lookout to spot whales. We might start to close the windows in the house at night and get out a thin blanket for the bed, but we’d still be putting on sunblock every day and walking on the beach on a regular basis. Even when it rains in Honolulu, you know the sunshine will return before too long. It couldn’t be more different from Scotland.
Loco Moco is the simplest way to feel like I’m back in Hawaii. It’s such a humble dish, and while making it at home doesn’t quite compare to the true beautiful greasiness of a Hawaiian drive-in, if I close my eyes for a minute, I can almost see the palm trees swaying in the trade winds. And almost nothing is made worse by putting a fried egg on top of it..
All you need to do is make up some white rice (I made mine in the microwave because we don’t eat rice enough to have a rice cooker and I’m too lazy to wash another pot), cook up some simple and delicious hamburger steaks, use the drippings to make gravy, then fry a couple of eggs, making sure to leave yourself a beautifully runny yolk. Put that all on a plate or in a bowl, and go to town. One benefit of making it at home is that there’s no styrofoam container to throw of at the end.
I am grateful to live in Scotland for so many reasons, not least of which is how easy it is to travel to other beautiful places, which we could never do in Honolulu. I miss our Hawaiian home, but at least I can make Loco Moco from time to time to take me back.
- 4 servings white rice
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons green onions, the white parts only, finely sliced (or scissored)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 to 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 to 1-1/2 cups beef stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 4 eggs
- Green onions, the green parts, thinly sliced (or scissored)
- In a mixing bowl, combine beef, seasonings, soy sauce, and onions. Work quickly with your hands and try not to handle it excessively.
- Form into four patties.
- Add oil to a large skillet and heat to medium high. Cook patties about 4 minutes a side or to desired doneness. Just make sure you get some good browning on the outside.
- As your meat is cooking up, make sure your rice is ready to go. Divide your rice between four plates or bowls.
- Place a hamburger steak atop each mound of rice so that the juices will soak into the rice. Don't waste the flavor.
- Reduce heat to medium low on the remaining fat and delicious bits in your skillet. Sprinkle flour over the fat, just enough to absorb the fat and create a paste. Cook for a few minutes until the flour mixture turns brown.
- Add stock about a quarter cup at a time, stirring well to remove lumps. Also make sure you scrape up any bits off the bottom of the pan. They are full of flavor. Keep adding liquid until you get your favorite consistency and season to taste.
- Spoon your gravy generously over your hamburger steaks and rice.
- Add butter to a nonstick skillet and melt over medium low heat.
- Crack you eggs into the pan and season with salt and pepper if desired. Cook slowly until whites are just set for over sunny side up eggs, or give them a quick flip, just 15 seconds on the other side, for over easy eggs.
- Place on egg with its gorgeously runny yolk, on top of each gravy covered hamburger steak, and dig in.