Dear friends, these are my tips for making great burgers.

If you follow these rules, you will get a gourmet sandwich!

The meat must be chopped rather than minced. It should be a balanced mix of sirloin, neck and bow. It would be ideal to chop it with a knife in order to have the right consistency. So as not to dry out during cooking, it must contain at least 20 percent fat (though, personally, I prefer a good 30%) in fact it is  the key element which, when combined with the right cooking, avoids a stringy result.

Having been chopped, the meat is pressed to form medallions.  The operation must be done quickly, to prevent the mixture from heating up and fat from melting.  The meat should not be pressed too vigorously: it is important to balance your efforts, so that the burger is compact and soft at the same time.

Once the burgers are formed, they should be seasoned with salt and pepper and left to rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes for it to acquire a rich flavor.

Cooking

Before cooking the burgers, it is best to let them rest at room temperature for at least 10 minutes, so that the inside is not too cold.

The hamburger is placed on a hot pan, without adding oil, cooked for about 2 minutes per side and turned only once.  It is better not to prolong cooking too much and above all, never crush it, to avoid losing the juices.  It is better to avoid aggressive cooking, I advice cooking the outside quickly and leaving the inside completely raw.  In this regard, I recommend our apple and pear charcoal which gives a constant and unaggressive heat. The more experienced could further enrich the cooking by putting flavored chips on the embers after having wet them in order to give an unmistakable smoked aroma to the burgers, plus the more cooking is gradual and homogeneous, the better the result.

These small precautions will allow you to have a soft hamburger with right consistency.  When it is almost cooked, if desired, you can complete with thin slices of cheese. Remove the meat with cheese from the grill and cover it with a lid (or a metal bowl) and let the cheese melt slightly.

The perfect hamburger, in addition to meat, also includes lettuce, tomato, cheese and bacon.  Bacon makes the flavor of the burger more intriguing. Bacon should be cut into strips that are not too thin, I recommend weaving several strips of bacon into a checkerboard pattern before cooking it on the grill.  In this way, the hamburger will be covered evenly.

The lettuce must be crunchy and fresh, with leaves of a balanced size relative to bread. It is better to take tomatoes for salads. A tomato must be firm and not too ripe, I also add oregano. The ideal cheese has a delicate flavor and melts well without moistening the meat.  The original is cheddar, but provolone and fontina also can be used.

The bread must be soft and should absorb the seasoning well. It also shouldn’t drip excessively and must be able to be  bitten easily.  Before stuffing it with meat it should be lightly toasted.

This is done only at last moment, when the meat is almost cooked.

What about sauces?  It depends on the taste, my kids love ketchup, I like a spicy and smoked note, and you?

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Aurora Shine OY
PL 6, Helsinki 00981, Finland
info@alaska-firewood.com

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