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Oct 16, 2007 11:32 AM

Hamburgers at home

Was wondering about how you fix your burgers at home? We normally have sirloin and ribeyes ground together, and then add a little salt, cracked black pepper and some garlic salt to the meat at home before we grill it. Try to keep it simple, especially with little, finicky eaters still at home.

What do you do differently to "jazz" the burgers up before grilling them?

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  1. Take two really thin patties and place a scoop of boursin cheese in the middle. Pinch the edges to seal it well and then grill. You get this garlic-herby cheese sauce in the middle of your burger that just tastes so good. I only do this with the soft cheese spread, though. Any other cheese is better melted on top of the burger.

    1 Reply
    1. re: leanneabe

      I've done this trick successfully with any kind of blue cheese. To die for. I also add Worchestershire sauce to the meat mix.

    2. I have never tried grinding rib eye and sirloin together to make burgers but my first reaction is that this is way overkill for a burger and unnessarily expensive; you might want to try a "blind" taste test to see if someone can actually identify the burgers made with meat that is $12/lb or more and something less expensive. Personally, my favorite burgers are already formed, frozen patties ( I believe 6 oz. each) that I pick up from a very good butcher and they can be thrown right on the grill from the freezer; cost is about $3/lb.

      1. I must say, the best burger meat at the best price is from Costco. Just mold it and chuck it on the grill. Even my wifey noticed the good taste!

        1. I love burgers inspired by Asian flavours - usually some soya sauce, fresh grated ginger, minced garlic and oyster sauce. Hoisin makes a great BBQ sauce for these.

          I will often sub in ground pork for the beef which is also delicious and often cheaper too.

          My fave topping for these is grilled onions, I slice red onions in thick rounds, season with o.o., salt and pepper and grill next to the burgers (flip once) 'till carmelized and sweet - frikken' awesome!

          1. If you LOVE burgers and you've never tried chopping your own meat at home, you owe it to yourself to try it. It makes a huge improvement in taste and texture. Totally different mouth feel than ground meat. Take equal parts chuck and sirloin. Not too lean. Dice the meat into cubes and then hit it with 10-15 pulses in the food processor. Go easy. You don't want pate or a Black Angus smoothie. Fire up the cast iron skillet under the highest heat... Hssssssss!

            Great tip from Jacques Pepin: Don't salt your burger meat until you take the burgers to the bun. The salt will leech away the moisture from the meat. Y'all already know not to press down on the burgers when they're cooking. That kills me. Anyone who leans on a burger with a spatula should be bannished to gardenburger-tempeh hell!

            Time to go fire up the cast iron!

            3 Replies
            1. re: markp

              Sounds great! Another tip I learned from fellow C'hounders is to add a little bit of water to the ground meat mixture before grilling. It kind of plumps out the meat so it stays quite juicy. I sometimes also add steak seasoning to the mix and the burgers come out really tasty.

              1. re: markp

                I would not have the temerity to disagree with Jacques Pepin, were it not for the fact that Southern Claifornia's Burger Queen Nancy Silverton does, too: burgers, like any other meat, are better for being presalted some time before grilling. What little moisture it may pull from the meat adds to the flavorful crust on the surface, or at least that's how it seems to me.

                1. re: Will Owen

                  This is also Alton's claim. That the salt draws out just enough juices to make the Maillard reaction possible, which means nice browned meat, and that brings flavor to the party. :)

                  I have tested both salted and not, and I go salted every time now.