Our growing section on hamburgers will help you understand all the angles in making big fat juicy steakburgers or thin crispy diner burgers, and the techniques are very different! We'll take you on a tour of the regional styles of hamburgers, help you select the right buns, cheeses, toppings and bottomings, and give you the secret sauce recipe.
A Taxonomy Of The Great Burger Styles. To the observant burgologist, there are at least a dozen distinctive species and subspecies of burger. Like sports teams, everyone has a favorite. Most hamburgers are distinguished mainly by the condiments. But condiments don't make the burger. The meat does. And how you cook it.
The Science of Hamburgers. Close your eyes and think of the best hamburger you've ever had. In a restaurant, right? Let's fix this. Let's all go from Grasshopper to Burger Zen Master.
The Science of Hamburger Buns. A good grocery store hamburger bun will do if it is fresh, but you can set your burgers apart with something a little better.
The Science of Hamburger Sauces, Condiments, and Toppings. What goes under the patty, what goes on top, and a recipe for your own great secret sauce.
Big Mac Special Sauce. McDonald's is famous for it's Big Mac with its "Special Sauce." Here's how to make it at home.
The Science of Cheeseburgers. (1) The cheese must be melted. It cannot be cold or hard. (2) The chosen cheese must enhance the composition of the sandwich, not clash with it. There are two ways to go with adding dairy to your cow: Melting cheese, or spreading cheese.
E-coli 0157:H7 In Burgers: The Risk Is Serious. Cooking can be dangerous. Fire, knives, pathogens, oh my! People can die from improper cooking. A little knowledge and a lot of common sense can get you out alive. Below is an ounce of prevention and a pound of cure.
How To Make Safe Burgers. According to health officials as many as 70,000 Americans fall ill from E-coli produced toxins each year, most of them as a result of tainted hamburger meat. Some of them die. Here's how it happens and how to prevent it.
Grinding Your Own Burgers. When you grind your own hamburgers you are assured of the freshest meat, just the right fat to lean ratio, and you know that the meat hasn't been contaminated by an improperly cleaned grinder, and if you cook it promptly, there is less time for microbial growth.
Steakhouse Steakburger Recipe. The succulent Steakhouse Steakburger is the elusive beast that I stalked for years whenever I ate out. Like a lion hunting wildebeest in the Serengeti, I came home skunked more often than sated. And when I came home, the confounded thing turned the tables and stalked me, circling me in my sleep, just out of reach, haunting my dreams. I could not catch it. Not on my own grill. Rarely in restaurants. My prey is a big fat fellow, about 3/4" thick, weighing in at 8 ounces or so. It wastes no space on the bun. It has a thin rich salty cordovan crust that is redolent of slightly charred tallow, and when punctured by my fangs, gushes myoglobin and molten fat profusely. With each bite it reminds me that a great burger is not just cheap calories wrapped in tissue paper on every corner of every town in America, but a gustatory delight as elusive as any delicacy. Here's how I bagged the elusive steakhouse steakburger.
Diner Burger Recipe. Diner Burgers are small disks, 4 ounces or less, as opposed to big thick Steakhouse Steakburgers. It's all about the browning the meat surface, it's all about the Maillard reaction.
New Mexico Green Chile Cheeseburger. The Green Chile Cheeseburger is one of the few truly authentic regional styles of burger in the nation. It seems as if every bar and burger joint in "The Land of Enchantment" has a green chile salsa with which they adorn their burgers, fries, chili, chips, beans, soups, stews, chiles rellenos, enchilladas, and whatever else is in the kitchen.
The Science of Ketchup. What would we do without ketchup? We put it on burgers, we plunge French fries into it, and we make barbecue sauces from it. And really, when you think about it, most barbecue sauces are just a form of pumped up ketchup. And it is not hard to make a killer ketchup from scratch.
The Science of Mustard. There are many different types of mustard. You can buy mustard powders, pastes, or sauces. Here are the differences and how to use them.
Sweet Sour Pickle Chips. This quick and simple recipe makes sweet and sour pickle slices for sandwiches perfect for mounding on hamburgers, deli sandwiches, pulled pork sandwiches, or even straight as a side or snack. You don't need to Pasteurize or heat treat these pickles, and you don't need much time.
Cowboy Candy (Sweet Pickled jalapeños). There are two kinds of "Cowboy Candy" and this recipe is not for chaw. This is a sweet/sour pickled pepper that is great as a relish on hot dogs, burgers, cold cut sandwiches, pulled pork, coleslaw, on grilled cheese sandwiches, on Italian beef and Italian Sausages, or mixed in with your cornbread. Take a block of cream cheese and cover the top with these tasty rings and serve with crackers as an appeteaser.
...more to come (to be notified when new recipes and other articles are published, be sure to subscribe to our free, spam free, email newsletter "Smoke Signals").