Photography by Steve Henke / June, 2012
The Best Burger
½ tsp. minced onion
½ tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ cup panko bread crumbs
½ tsp. freshly ground
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 pound ground Kobe chuck
4 pretzel rolls, split in half
4 tsp. melted butter
Hardwood smoked bacon
1. Preheat the oven to 250° F. Preheat a griddle to 450° F.
2. Combine the onion, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, bread crumbs, pepper and salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
3. Line a jellyroll or sheet pan with parchment paper, and place the ground chuck in the middle of the pan. Cover the meat with a large sheet of plastic wrap. Roll meat with a rolling pin until it covers the surface of the pan; it should be very thin. Remove the plastic wrap, and sprinkle the meat with the seasoning mixture. Fold the meat in half, from side to side, using the parchment paper. Use a pizza wheel to cut the meat into 4 even squares.
4. Brush the rolls with butter, wrap in foil and place in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, place the burgers on the griddle and cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Add cheese after the first turn.
5. Remove the buns from the oven. Build your burger with toppings and add any condiments you would like and serve immediately.
MAKES 4 BURGERS.
PERFECT PAIR: A TO Z ROSÉ FROM OREGON This Sangiovese-based pink is sure to ignite the senses for this pairing. Hints of strawberry spice, notes of earthy plum and the bright tones of cherry will intertwine with the juicy flavors and toppings of this burger perfectly.
TO PAIR BURGERS WITH WINE “What Grows Together, Goes Together”... If it’s a regional recipe that speaks to a particular country, then use a wine from the same region. For example, have all Italian toppings and flavors to your burger? Pair to an Italian wine.
Mini Burger Buffet
1½ pounds ground beef
1 large clove garlic,
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
FLAVOR VARIATIONS Smoky BBQ Cheddar, Buffalo Style or Taco
1. Combine basic Mini Burger ingredients in medium bowl, adding desired flavor variation ingredients and mixing lightly but thoroughly. Lightly shape into twelve 1/2-inch thick mini patties.
2. Place patties on grid over medium, ash-covered coals. Grill, covered, 8 to 10 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, covered, 9 to 11 minutes) until instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into center registers 160°F, turning occasionally.
3. Serve mini burgers as directed in desired flavor variation.
SMOKY BBQ CHEDDAR: Add 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese to basic Mini Burger mixture. Halfway through grilling, baste patties with ¼ cup hickory barbecue sauce. Place burgers on bottoms of 12 split small dinner rolls. Top evenly with 24 sweet or dill pickle slices and ¾ cup prepared coleslaw. Close sandwiches. Serve with additional barbecue sauce, as desired.
BUFFALO STYLE: Add ¼ tsp. ground red pepper and ½ cup crumbled blue cheese to basic Mini Burger mixture. While patties are grilling, combine 3 tbsp. melted butter and ¼ cup hot pepper sauce. Set aside. Place burgers on bottoms of 12 split small dinner rolls. Top evenly with thinly sliced celery, shredded carrots, as desired, and some of the hot sauce mixture. Close sandwiches. Serve with blue cheese dressing, as desired, and remaining hot sauce mixture.
TACO: Add one package (1.25 ounces) taco seasoning mix to Basic Mini Burger mixture. While patties are grilling, combine ½ cup dairy sour cream and 2 tsp. fresh lime juice. Set aside. Cut burgers in half and place both halves in each of 12 taco shells. Top evenly with shredded lettuce, chopped tomato, shredded Cheddar cheese or Mexican cheese blend, salsa, and sour cream mixture, as desired.
MAKES 12 BURGERS.
Ruby Watcho’s Great Canadian Burger
FOR THE PATTIES
1¾ pounds ground chuck
2 garlic cloves, crushed
Pinch of red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp. chopped parsley
¼ cup finely diced onion
2-4 Tbsp. fresh bread
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
FOR THE GARNISH
4 slices aged Canadian
1 onion, cut into
8 slices Peameal
4 hamburger buns with
Butter, for the buns
8 slices tomato
4 pickles, sliced lengthwise
1. To make the patties, combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix together well. Form into four patties. Preheat grill to medium high and place the patties on the grill. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, then turn and continue cooking for a couple of minutes until desired doneness.
2. In the meantime, grill bacon slices for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, or until juicy and cooked through. Place bacon on the burger and top with Cheddar cheese. Close grill lid for 1 to 2 minutes, or until cheese begins to melt.
3. Butter the buns and grill, butter side down, until golden. Place the cheese and bacon-topped patty on bun. Top with tomato, pickle slices, and iceberg lettuce. Finish with condiments as desired.
Serve immediately. MAKES 4 BURGERS.
Another TIP FROM LESLEE MILLER: Feel like the burger has some spice or smoke? Pair it up with a wine that can take the pressure. A rich and supple wine will absorb spice, smoke or rich sauce by snuggling up to the juicy qualities of the meat.
PERFECT PAIR: CAPEZZANA BARCO REALE DI CARMIGNANO
Made predominantly of Sangiovese, this wine also includes Cabernet and Canaiolo. It is a round, rich, concentrated red with hints of kalamata olive and fresh herbs. The rich Cheddar cheese paired to the bacon and Dijon mustard will heighten the flavors of this unbelievably layered Italian wine.