Monday, 10 March 2014

The Juiciest Hamburger Ever

Sometimes, you just need to eat something that drizzles juice down your chin and all the way down into your boots. Don't you? A big, fat, juicy hamburger. But what that 'juice' really is, is fat. Fat is flavour!

I was recently researching what it is that makes for a truly juicy hamburger, and the answer is: the F-word. Somebody even suggested you should have a fat-to-meat ratio of 40%. That seemed a bit excessive to me, although I did try it once and the results were truly, joyously dribbly. I had to get my arteries cleaned out the next day, though, so maybe it wasn't such a great idea. The consensus seems to be about 20% fat in the burger, but in my video below I've gone for a compromise of 30%.

INGREDIENTS (makes 4 burgers)
FOR THE PATTIES:
450g beef (a reasonable cut, no need to go crazy)
150g hard fat (tocino/lardo or similar)
1 medium onion
pinch of salt
pinch of ground black pepper

GARNISH
4 good burger buns - not the soft fluffy mass-produced things from the supermarket - something more solid like my brioche burger buns
Sliced tomato
Iceberg lettuce
Dill pickles (gherkins), sliced
Cheese - a good, flavoursome mature cheddar, gruyere, raclette - basically anything that melts and tastes of cheese
Anything else you like - ketchup, mayo, mustard, bacon etc

METHOD
1) Chop the beef, fat and onion into chunks that will go through your mincer
2) Run all patty ingredients through your mincer using the coarse plate
3) Run the mixture through the mincer again, this time using the medium plate.
4) Refrigerate the mixture until you are ready to use it.
5) Form the mixture into patties about the same diameter as your rolls, and 2cm thick
6) Heat a thin film of vegetable oil in a thick-bottomed frying pan on medium heat. Place the patties in and turn every 30 seconds or so for a total time of 6 minutes*
7) Remove patties from pan, tent in foil and let rest 5 - 10 minutes
8) Assemble burger and garnishes
9) Eat

*How often you should flip your patties is a contentious issue, but this article shows that frequent flipping is best.
The timings above should give you medium-rare burgers - final internal temperature of 55-60ºC.

1 comment:

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