Loco Moco – Hawaiian Comfort Food

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Last updated November 23, 2018

From the islands to your dinner table, Loco Moco is Hawaiian comfort food made with rice and a burger smothered with rich gravy and a runny yolk.

Disclosure: Certified Angus Beef® brand sponsored this post. Opinions are my own.

loco moco with egg on top of beef, gravy and rice with hula girl in front of plate

I live in Las Vegas, which is often called the 9th Island because so many people have moved here from Hawaii, including my husband’s family.

Just the other day, they were talking about how they miss Loco Moco and how they were looking for an original version that didn’t sway too far from the comfort food they remembered from back home.

With all the glitz and glamour in Vegas, chefs can make things a little too fancy here sometimes.

But Loco Moco is meant to be simple food with simple ingredients. It starts with a bed of sticky white rice and is topped with, a hamburger patty, brown gravy and a sunny-side-up egg.

4 beef patties seasoned

Loco Moco was created in the 1940s, when some boys dining at the Lincoln Grill in Hilo, Hawaii, asked the waitress to serve them a dish they could afford. They threw out the idea of rice, beef and gravy. And the rest is history.

My version starts with Certified Angus Beef® brand ground beef patties. Go with the 80/20 meat to fat ratio. You’ll need that fat to make the gravy.

And because you need the fat, the patties should be cooked in a skillet, not on the grill.

4 raw beef patties in cast iron skillet

Season them with salt and pepper, and cook about 4 minutes per side.

4 beef patties searing in cast iron skillet

Just look at that char. That right there is flavor.

Since the pan is hot and the burgers are juicy, the grease will splatter. To avoid this, place a piece of foil loosely over the pan while the patties cook.

I find this works better than a lid, because it allows the air to escape. A lid would trap the steam. You definitely don’t want steamed burgers.

Once you remove the burgers from the pan, you’re left with liquid gold – Certified Angus Beef® brand pan juices.

Let’s make the gravy.

There are 3 easy ways to avoid lumpy gravy

For this recipe, I use the roux method. I add flour to the pan drippings and allow it to cook for 30-60 seconds. Then, I incorporate about a half cup of the broth. Once that is well blended, I add the remaining broth. It’s finished with butter for a smooth consistency.

Another method would be to create a slurry. To do this, blend the flour with about a half cup of beef broth. Stir the two together until combined. Heat the remaining broth with the drippings, and add the slurry to thicken.

The final method is a beurre manie. This involves rolling flour and butter together into a ball. Deglaze the pan with all of the beef broth. After a few minutes of reducing, add the butter ball to the pan. It will gradually thicken the gravy.

4 eggs frying in a skillet

The Show Stopper – Loco Moco Topper

Although the egg wasn’t included in the original version of the Loco Moco, it’s definitely a staple to the Hawaiian dish now.

Be sure to cook it sunny side up. The bright golden yolk is like a morning wake-up call, especially when it oozes into the gravy.

When cooking an egg sunny side up, look for the whites to cook while making sure the yolks stay runny.

As for the rice, I always use a rice cooker. Just rinse the rice 2-3 times, and then add it to the cooker. I usually use 1 cup water for every cup of rice.

loco moco with egg on top of beef, gravy and rice

In 2018, Certified Angus Beef® brand turned 40 years old. The non-profit was started by ranchers who believed consumers would value consistent quality beef that met “uncompromising standards for taste.”

The brand holds an annual conference every year to bring together ranchers, food service distributors and foodies. I was fortunate to attend their bash in 2017 in Nashville. For their 40th anniversary, the celebration traveled to Maui, Hawaii.

So this dish, a family favorite prepared on the 9th Island, is my tribute to Certified Angus Beef® brand’s 40th anniversary.

Ho’omaika’i ‘ana – congratulations.

loco moco with egg on top of beef, gravy and rice with hula girl in front of plate

Loco Moco - Hawaiian Comfort Food

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American, Hawaiian
Keyword: beef, Loco Moco
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 41 minutes
Total Time: 51 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 677 kcal
Author: Christie Vanover

From the islands to your dinner table, Loco Moco is Hawaiian comfort food made with rice and a burger smothered with rich gravy and a runny yolk.

Print

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white rice uncooked
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 lb Certified Angus Beef® brand ground beef
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 green onions sliced

Instructions

  1. Rinse the rice under cool water. Place the rinsed rice and 2 cups water in a rice cooker and cook. 
  2. Shape the ground beef into four patties. Season both sides with salt and pepper. 

  3. Heat olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the patties. Sear for 4 minutes. Flip. Cook for 4 more minutes. Remove the patties and set aside. 

  4. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the flour to the skillet. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring continuously. 

  5. Add 1/2 cup beef broth to the skillet, and stir to combine. 

  6. Add the remaining beef broth and soy sauce. Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

  7. In another skillet, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium-high high. Crack the eggs into the pan and fry for 3-4 minutes, until the whites are cooked through. The yolks should remain loose. 

  8. Place a large circle cookie cutter on a plate. Fill with a spoonful of rice. Remove the cookie cutter. 

  9. Place a cooked patty on top of the rice. Spoon on a ladle of gravy. Top with a cooked egg, and garnish with green onions. 

Nutrition Facts
Loco Moco - Hawaiian Comfort Food
Amount Per Serving
Calories 677 Calories from Fat 234
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 26g 40%
Saturated Fat 9g 45%
Cholesterol 84mg 28%
Sodium 1861mg 78%
Potassium 528mg 15%
Total Carbohydrates 76g 25%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Protein 29g 58%
Vitamin A 3%
Vitamin C 1.4%
Calcium 6.1%
Iron 20.2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
From the islands to your dinner table, Loco Moco is Hawaiian comfort food made with rice and a burger smothered with rich gravy and a runny yolk. #locomoco #bestangusbeef #hawaiian #breakfast #beef
By |2018-11-23T09:58:45+00:00September 23, 2018|

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