Despite the many origin stories of the hamburger, Americans have made it our own, and it may be our greatest contribution to the culinary world.
In its basic form, a hamburger is simply a ground beef patty placed between two slices of bread but, boy, how far we have come from that simple premiss.
Look at what we put on a hamburger these days, including all sorts of sauces, tomatoes, lettuce, cheese, pickles and more.
Today, I’ll share a few hamburger ideas, ranging from simple to a bit complex.
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Don’t forget to dress your burger and some favorite accompaniments include pickles, onion, tomato and lettuce.
This is just a basic burger, but if you want to upgrade this recipe a little, fry your own frozen french fries, just make sure to serve them immediately after coming out of the oil (drain and salt first).
1 pound 80-20 ground chuck
Salt and pepper
Traditional hamburger buns
Mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard
Tomato, pickle, onion, lettuce
This is as simple as it gets. Buy USDA select or choice ground beef. Season the beef with salt and pepper, form into patties and fry in hot oil until done as you like it. When using store-bought ground beef, well done is probably a good idea (155 f. by the way). It is not worth a date with E. Coli bacteria. Make sure to toast the buns, and you can add a little butter if you like.
Pretty Good Burger
½ pound choice ground beef
½ pound ground pork
Thick slices white cheddar cheese
Sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, red pepper flakes
Dale’s Steak Seasoning
Crusty dark bread, sliced 2/3 inch (see the deli of your grocery store)
Combine the beef and pork, season aggressively and mix well. Remember the Dale’s is salty, so don’t over salt. Form into patties at least 1-inch thick, thicker if you like. Grill over a hardwood charcoal fire until just done, top with the cheese, close the grill lid and finish cooking until the cheese is melted. Toast the bread on the fire, add thick-sliced tomatoes and mayonnaise and serve at once.
A World Class Burger
1 pound ground to order prime beef
fresh ground black pepper,
Red pepper flakes
1 diced jalapeno pepper
3-4 cloves finely diced garlic
Best quality olive oil
Thick sliced, locally baked dark or wheat bread
Optional heirloom tomatoes
Find a grocery store that sells prime beef, pick a well-marbled cut and ask the butcher to grind it for you (he may have tears in his eyes, but he will do it for you). Be prepared to pay through the nose. Just warning you. Season aggressively, add the pepper and garlic, and mix well. Form into a patty close to 2 inches thick. Grill this bad boy over a hardwood fire, but just until medium rare or rare. Your chances of E. Coli with ground-to-order beef are slim. Add the cheese and melt. Toast the bread, assemble the burger, top with olive salad, add sliced jalapenos if you want to spice it up. Grab a handful of paper towels and dig in.