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Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 2538
Registered: 02-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 - 02:11 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Father's Day is coming up, which means burgers with my brother-in-law. That, in turn, means repeating our endless disagreement about the proper way to cook them. I need some opinions from the collective here (preferably ones which agree with me ).

It has taken me years, but I have finally convinced said BIL that the Burger Of The Gods is 1/2 beef, 1/2 pork, both with plenty of fat, ground together with salt and black pepper, and minimally handled afterward. Up to that point, we are on the same page.

But he insists on then ruining these works of art over a bed of hot charcoal, letting all of the precious fat drain away and flare up. The result looks black on the outside and tastes dry and burnt to me.

I, OTOH, believe that the One True Burger is best cooked on a red-hot cast iron griddle, turning only once, so that the outside is brown and crunchy. More fat is retained and what does drain away does not burn. Done properly (crunchy on the outside, pink in the middle), it cannot be eaten with dribbling down your shirt.

Now, I ask the collective: Who's right here?
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 11799
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 - 02:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm an advocate of 100 percent fresh (never frozen) ground USDA Prime beef sirloin, which is lean but retains just enough fat, with fresh ground black pepper and not too much salt. The correct thickness of the uncooked patty is a little more than one inch. I like the taste of charcoal, but the coals can't be too hot and the burger must be carefully cooked so as to still have a touch of pink in the middle. I agree that it should be turned only once.

(Message edited by BillPierce on June 16, 2010)
 

Bob D
Member
Username: Fl_bob

Post Number: 104
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 - 03:27 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I like to pile my coals on one side of my Weber kettle and grill for about a minute, then turn, wait one more minute, and then slide them so they are close to the coals but not right over them. If there more than four patties, I just swivel the grate 180 degrees instead of sliding them. The thermometer on top of my kettle reads over 500 degrees during cooking.(I put the lid on) They are never dry. I agree with handling as little as possible making patties, and would not consider grilling burgers leaner than 80/20.
 

davidwaite
Senior Member
Username: Davidw

Post Number: 2083
Registered: 03-2001
Posted on Wednesday, June 16, 2010 - 05:01 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm with you all the way, Paul, although I prefer 70% beef, 20% pork, and 10% lamb. I think I got that idea from Alton a few years ago. And lately I can't seem to get away from mixing in some blue cheese crumbs as well. But that's personal taste.

Bob describes a great method to do them on the grill, essentially searing them so you don't lose too much of the moisture. A very hot grill, (and 500 degrees with do it), is a requirement or they may very well turn out dry. I work a couple nites a week at a local pub in the kitchen and it pains me to see the head cook flip a burger on the flat top and then smash it with the spatchula. ACK!

For years I've always used charcoal but this spring I bought myself the Weber 220Q. It's an awesome grill that I am still getting use to and is much more convenient when I come home and just want to throw on a couple burgers, brats, or something quick. Flip on the gas, ignite, and within a couple three minutes I'm ready to cook. It has an optional cast iron grittle that would be perfect for burgers.

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