Sep 1, 2011

Beef Up Your Burger

 Beef Up Your Burger

Football season has come; and with it, tailgate parties! Here are some helpful hints on how to beef up your burger for the next big game.

Hint #1: The Meat - All experts agree that it's the beef that makes the burger. Choose meat that is lean, but fatty enough to hold its juices, such as 70% to 85% lean ground beef. To ensure that you get quality beef, buy beef chuck and grind it yourself or ask the butcher to grind it for you.

Hint#2: Ingredients - To really spice up the flavor of your burger; get creative with your ingredients.
Here are some suggestions:
  • Minced jalapeno slices
  • Minced onions
  • Shredded cheeses such as Cheddar, mozzarella, Swiss, Pepper
    Jack, Monterey Jack, Gruyère, blue cheese, or Parmesan
  • Garlic salt or powder, lemon pepper, meat seasonings and all-purpose seasonings
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Minced bell pepper
  • Bacon bits
  • A little lemon juice
  • BBQ sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • Minced garlic
  • Fresh minced cilantro
If you're using a lot of ingredients, make sure to mix them before adding to the beef.
Hint#3: Make it Moist - There are several different smart ways to ensure your burger stays moist and delicious.
Here are some suggestions:
  • Avoid touching the beef with your hands more than you need to, the heat will start to melt some of the fat and make it tougher. Use a spoon or spatula instead.
  • Add an egg. This will not only help the moisture, but also give form to your burger.
  • Add a tablespoon of olive oil.
  • Add some Worcestershire sauce or BBQ sauce. This can also help spice up some bland meat.
  • Other vegetables added to the meat will add moisture during cooking.
  • Add a mixture of breadcrumbs and milk.
Hint#4: Prep and Cook - Make your patties no more than 3/4" to one-inch thick and use the bottom of a glass to press down the middle slightly. Prepare grill to medium-high heat or if working on a stovetop, heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook burgers, flipping once, until you reach the desired doneness.
Hint#5: Toppings - Lettuce, tomato, onions, mayonnaise, ketchup and mustard are the staple of any burger -but why not venture to try something new?
Here are some suggestions:
  • Gourmet cheeses such as blue cheese, Swiss, Colby Jack, Pepper Jack, sharp Cheddar, Muenster, or any other cheese that can melt
  • Avocado slices or guacamole
  • Fried onions or onion rings
  • Chipotle mayonnaise
  • Salsa
  • Pastrami
  • Deli mustard
  • BBQ sauce
  • Thousand Island dressing
  • Ranch dressing
Many of these ingredients can be purchased at the BYU Creamery.

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