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Other than Brewing => All Things Food => Topic started by: Beer Monger on May 02, 2011, 05:55:20 PM

Title: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 02, 2011, 05:55:20 PM
May is, among many other things, National Hamburger Month.  Who's got an amazing burger recipe?  I'll have to get creative & see what I can come up with.   8)


P.S.  May is also National Strawberry Month - so I guess it's time to start enjoying my Strawberry Cider.  :)  
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 02, 2011, 06:23:36 PM
Ground chuck, salt, pepper.  Cast iron pan or grill.  Cook to medium at most.  Sharp cheddar.  Soft bun.  Condiments of choice.

Do that right, and it's amazing.  Honest food, there.

Favorite variation is to add fire-roasted poblanos, chopped up so they aren't stringy.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tumarkin on May 02, 2011, 06:57:01 PM
next Sunday, May 8th, is National Outdoor Intercourse Day, so grill up some burgers for your sweetie and then....

+1 to Gordon's suggestions, though I'd probably use blue cheese. Couple of keys to good burgers...... use top quality ground meat (beef or other, be creative), spice the meat before making the patties, don't over-handle the meat when making the patties, don't overcook. go wild with the toppings, your choice.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 02, 2011, 07:04:20 PM
If your burgers look like ovals in cross-section, then make a little depression in the center of the patties.  When it cooks, it will tend to flatten out.

Don't every press down hard on the burger with a spatula, unless you like dry burgers.

Resting them a few minutes before serving helps as well.  Tent with foil.

I like blue cheese (and bacon as well), but they can also stomp on the flavor of the meat if you use too much.  I know, I just implied there's such as thing as too much bacon...
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 02, 2011, 07:11:39 PM
Everybody has their way but for me it's the basics, plain and simple...but the devil is in the details.

Even the order in which you stack it makes a huge difference for me (I like a very light layer of mayo, shredded lettuce, and thin-sliced tomato all UNDER the patty, there are good reasons for this).

Things that completely ruin a burger for me:
Buns that are too hard or chewy and cause the patty to go squirting out the back of the burger...get yer foo-foo buns outta here.
Overworking the meat or using too lean meat...80/20 chuck is my favorite.  85/15 is borderline too lean (esp if grilling, OK for skillet).
Making meatloaf burgers...just a minimally worked beef patty cooked right with S&P is best for me.
A burger so tall you can't get your mouth around it.  I prefer a patty less than 8 oz, 6-7 oz is about perfect for me.
And this doesn't really ruin it but I don't want liquified cheese on my burger, just barely softened (it won't even really look melted).  I see a lot of people really melt the s*** out of the cheese and it's just not as good imo.  I cheeze it right as it comes off the grill/skillet.

Simlar to pizzas, if a simple burger has all the details right you don't need many 'toppings'.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: johnf on May 02, 2011, 07:15:13 PM
I find grinding the meat immediately before cooking is worth it.

You can also buy lean meat (sirloin) and use bacon to get your fat up to 20% if you grind your own. Speaking of too much bacon.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 02, 2011, 07:26:57 PM
...spice the meat before making the patties...
I thought per the Burger Lab this was a no-no with burgers?  That's my recollection but it's blocked at work and cannot verify.  Anybody?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: maxieboy on May 02, 2011, 08:32:14 PM
Chuck. Check.
No more than medium. Check.
From the bottom up: bun, burger, cheese, fixins and condiments. Condiments and/or fixins on both sides of the burger = fail.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tumarkin on May 02, 2011, 09:07:50 PM
...spice the meat before making the patties...
I thought per the Burger Lab this was a no-no with burgers?  That's my recollection but it's blocked at work and cannot verify.  Anybody?

damn, don't know what Burger Lab recommends but I've done that for a long time and it works well for me. It's not a big deal but it makes it easier to form the patties without overworking them too much. I've seen so many people that squeeze, form, slap, squash the patties way too much.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: corkybstewart on May 02, 2011, 09:16:50 PM
Green chiles, grilled bacon, cheddar(or Swiss) and tomatoes are all the toppings a great burger needs.  My daughter likes grilled portabellos also, but with the green chilies that's wasted.Homemade fries are the only side dish needed.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 02, 2011, 09:47:19 PM
grapeseed oil in the skillet and on high or canola and on medium?  what's your preference?  I'm still on the fence here  :-\

I've come to prefer the skillet as well, but I do still like the ambiance on being outside on the grill with a pint in one hand and long handled spatula in the other. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: weazletoe on May 02, 2011, 10:23:24 PM
I plan on doing the 50/50 burger here real quick. One ppund of burger, and one pound of bacon, fried, crumbled, and mixed with the burger to make patties. Topped with bacon, and thick slices of cheddar.
   Otherwise, I use 60/40 burger, a couple eggs, bbq sauce, wosterchire, garlic powder, onion powder, fresh cracked pepper, kosher salt, and some red pepper flakes. Good stuff! 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 03, 2011, 01:54:35 AM
Interesting that most of you are using cheddar.  I find that cheddar doesn't melt evenly.  I use muenster or bleu chese or swiss or, in a pinch, american.  They all melt more smoothly & evenly than cheddar does. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: weazletoe on May 03, 2011, 02:06:19 AM
A taco burger is pretty good too. Have to use ground turkey for it though. Beef just does not taste the same. Mix your turkey with a packet of taco seasonig, a little garlic powder, and some good salsa. Top with pepper jack cheese, salsa, a good hot sauce, and Holly like avacado on hers.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 03, 2011, 11:51:27 AM
grapeseed oil in the skillet and on high or canola and on medium?  what's your preference?  I'm still on the fence here  :-\

I've come to prefer the skillet as well, but I do still like the ambiance on being outside on the grill with a pint in one hand and long handled spatula in the other. 
I don't use any oil, cast iron skillet on medium-high.  I agree about the grill, esp this time of year.

Off-topic: I knew I recognized the name Paul Blatz on my Hurricane Blowoff scoresheet.  You judged one of my two entries, either a Strong Scotch or a Vienna lager (both won gold!).  But as usual Josh and Ray stole the show for CFHB (Josh is sick good!).  Great feedback on my scoresheets, thanks!
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 03, 2011, 11:55:14 AM
I also just bought a bunch of OB Honey and 12 lb strawberries for a Strawberry Mead...maybe that will be ready for National Strawberry month 2013.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: ryang on May 03, 2011, 03:13:32 PM
you want burgers?

here's your bugers... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9FRSghXhDM
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 03, 2011, 03:24:58 PM
you want burgers?

here's your bugers... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9FRSghXhDM

I'll have to try that sometime - but w/ all homemade stuff.  ;) 


And I can't believe I missed it, but this is also National BBQ Month!  Time to Q some more!  :) 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Hokerer on May 03, 2011, 03:54:08 PM
[Off-topic: I knew I recognized the name Paul Blatz on my Hurricane Blowoff scoresheet.  You judged one of my two entries, either a Strong Scotch or a Vienna lager (both won gold!).  But as usual Josh and Ray stole the show for CFHB (Josh is sick good!).  Great feedback on my scoresheets, thanks!

You've got scoresheets already??  Maybe you're local but I've yet to see anything and they haven't even updated the website either.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 03, 2011, 04:15:42 PM
[Off-topic: I knew I recognized the name Paul Blatz on my Hurricane Blowoff scoresheet.  You judged one of my two entries, either a Strong Scotch or a Vienna lager (both won gold!).  But as usual Josh and Ray stole the show for CFHB (Josh is sick good!).  Great feedback on my scoresheets, thanks!

You've got scoresheets already??  Maybe you're local but I've yet to see anything and they haven't even updated the website either.
Yes, a couple that are both CFHB members went down to the HB and brought back all of our medals and scoresheets and we had a little presentation at our monthly meeting on Sunday.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: jeffy on May 03, 2011, 04:39:48 PM
[Off-topic: I knew I recognized the name Paul Blatz on my Hurricane Blowoff scoresheet.  You judged one of my two entries, either a Strong Scotch or a Vienna lager (both won gold!).  But as usual Josh and Ray stole the show for CFHB (Josh is sick good!).  Great feedback on my scoresheets, thanks!

You've got scoresheets already??  Maybe you're local but I've yet to see anything and they haven't even updated the website either.
Yes, a couple that are both CFHB members went down to the HB and brought back all of our medals and scoresheets and we had a little presentation at our monthly meeting on Sunday.

I don't know what this has to do with hamburgers, but who (BoS's and Club) won the Hurricane Blow-Off?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 03, 2011, 05:03:07 PM
I don't know what this has to do with hamburgers, but who (BoS's and Club) won the Hurricane Blow-Off?
My fault for the threadjack, sorry.  I don't think anybody in CFHB won any BoS awards jeffy and I'm not sure which club won it (I don't think it was us).


"I'm not sorry!  Want a hambugga?"
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Hokerer on May 03, 2011, 05:30:26 PM
"I'm not sorry!  Want a hambugga?"

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_-CZtVxNFsac/SlIfRj4gGCI/AAAAAAAACUw/Nn__R6Ip430/s320/wimpy.jpg)
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 03, 2011, 05:47:45 PM
OK, so... suggestions for eating out.  Who's got the best burger in your area?

Around Seattle?

-Red Mill Burger
-Blue Moon Burgers
-Dick's

Any others I forgot/I don't know about? 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: bluesman on May 03, 2011, 06:44:26 PM
"I'm not sorry!  Want a hambugga?"

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_-CZtVxNFsac/SlIfRj4gGCI/AAAAAAAACUw/Nn__R6Ip430/s320/wimpy.jpg)

Wimpy is the man!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJ6xBaZ92uA
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: weazletoe on May 03, 2011, 09:13:30 PM
OK, so... suggestions for eating out.  Who's got the best burger in your area?

Around Seattle?

-Red Mill Burger
-Blue Moon Burgers
-Dick's

Any others I forgot/I don't know about? 

As far as chains go, I love Five Guys. We have a great local place here in Pocatello, called Toms. And, one back in Ohio, just a little diner. Their burgers rock! They have one called the Full Back. Its' three 1/2 patties, Tons of cheese, Smothered in chili, good old fashioned skin on fries,, onion rings, and jalapinos. It's on bad boy!
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 04, 2011, 07:31:37 AM
First rule for me is good meat. But for the love of pete don't buy wagyu or kobe or prime rib or filet mignon or some such crazy thing and GRIND IT.

My blend is: 50% well-marbled chuck, 23% oxtail, 25% sirloin, 2% pork belly (raw, uncured). If I can't get pork belly I use hickory or maple-smoked slab bacon (thick cut, meaning ~1/2" sections, one slice typically).

Good buns are impossible to find out here - how I miss thee, Martin's Potato rolls - so the best place to go for buns is… McDonald's. You can buy a regular hamburger 'nature' meaning it has nothing but bread and meat. Because they're special order, they're always made super fresh so they have't been sitting around for a while. Usually parents get them for picky eater kids. Anyway I keep the buns and if I had a dog I'd feed him the meat, but we just throw it out. The buns are pre-toasted which is nice, and they have a nice squish to them that supermarket buns don't. Also I hate sesame seeds on my buns.

Grinding: SUPER SUPER COLD meat grinder. Everything goes in the freezer; meat is cubed and put on a single layer on a baking tray and put in the bottom of the fridge (or kegerator, it's usually colder and has more even cooling). Grind once, keep already ground meat in a mound in the fridge as you go. You'll have to stop every pound or so of meat because the grinder warms up, and you don't want that - the meat'll get mushy. Put everything in the freezer for 30 minutes and drink a beer.

Cooking: 8-ounce patties, about 6-7" in diameter, sprinkled with médon sea salt and a lot of freshly cracked black pepper. Freshly cracked is the important part, because pre-ground pepper tastes like death.

Vacuum-pack with a foodsaver and put into the boil kettle with a PID attachment set to heat the water oven to rare, I think that's about 160 F? Let 'em sit in the water oven for about an hour, but not longer than 90 minutes or so. Yes, this is a health "risk" because it's in the "danger zone" for temperature but: 1. I sanitize my grinder before use, and the meat I use is from farms near me and is usually super, super fresh. Because I'm grinding myself there's less risk for nasties. Plus, life has risks. I don't let it worry me.

The water bath is great because it lets me take my time in doing everything else - the burgers won't overcook because the cooking medium is the same temperature as the meat.

Finally, I'll set the BGE to "T-Rex," around 600 * F. Depending on how people want there burgers done, I'll leave them on for a little while or a long while. Do one side, flip, put on cheese, bacon, whatever other 'hot' condiments need to go on, then put on a bun with whatever people want. I always put my 'moveable' condiments underneath the slice of cheese so they get melted to the burger patty and aren't as easy to move around.

Sides are usually cole slaw and beans, but sometimes (like this Saturday) I'll do sweet potato fries seasoned with powdered cinnamon and powdered chipotle (or ancho, depends on the crowd).

My favorite burger is either: sharp cheddar, 'shake sauce' (google it), pickle, lettuce, tomato OR stilton blue cheese, extra pepper on the meat, roasted garlic, onion confit.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 04, 2011, 12:24:44 PM
OK, that sounds really hard core.  But delicious.  Taking the time and effort to do your own custom grinds sounds like fun; I've seen it approached that way at some commercial places.

About the only thing I'd question is the water bath.  The temps seem off, unless burger temps are higher than beef in general.  Rare is in the low 120s (F) for a steak.  I never take the temps of burgers, though.  Also, it's not in the danger zone if your meat and grinder are chilled (below 40F) and you are cooking it above 140F and/or storing the meat below 40F.  It's also not a danger if all this is done within 2 hours.

Did you find that you can't cook to the right temps otherwise?  Seems like you'd need 3-4 minutes a side without doing the water bath.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 04, 2011, 01:56:00 PM
Burger Lab did a piece where they tried to come up with the best mixture for grinding your own, I remember it also had oxtail in it.  They said if just go with one cut (best compromise), use chuck.  That sous vide part is pretty hardcore...the things we'll do for that 'perfect' burger!
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 04, 2011, 05:36:36 PM
OK, that sounds really hard core.  But delicious.  Taking the time and effort to do your own custom grinds sounds like fun; I've seen it approached that way at some commercial places.

About the only thing I'd question is the water bath.  The temps seem off, unless burger temps are higher than beef in general.  Rare is in the low 120s (F) for a steak.  I never take the temps of burgers, though.  Also, it's not in the danger zone if your meat and grinder are chilled (below 40F) and you are cooking it above 140F and/or storing the meat below 40F.  It's also not a danger if all this is done within 2 hours.

Did you find that you can't cook to the right temps otherwise?  Seems like you'd need 3-4 minutes a side without doing the water bath.

Oh my temp quoted above was just me not remembering what it actually was. 120 or 130 sounds right.

SpanishCastleAle, yeah my blend is the same as Burger Lab but with MOR BACON
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 05, 2011, 04:48:58 PM
First rule for me is good meat. But for the love of pete don't buy wagyu or kobe or prime rib or filet mignon or some such crazy thing and GRIND IT.

My blend is: 50% well-marbled chuck, 23% oxtail, 25% sirloin, 2% pork belly (raw, uncured). If I can't get pork belly I use hickory or maple-smoked slab bacon (thick cut, meaning ~1/2" sections, one slice typically).


Didn't want to fill the page quoting you back, but wow.  You really get into it. 

Do you prefer an electric or hand-crank grinder?  I have a couple of old hand-crank ones.  I have never ground my own meat for a burger, but you've inspired me.  I will before this summer is out.  Preferably before this month is out!  ;) 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: johnf on May 05, 2011, 05:19:41 PM
OK, so... suggestions for eating out.  Who's got the best burger in your area?

Around Seattle?

-Red Mill Burger
-Blue Moon Burgers
-Dick's

Any others I forgot/I don't know about? 

In PDX I liked both Higgins and Concordia. Higgins serves the burger in the bar (and they don't call it a burger, the description is obvious enough but I went there a few times without noticing that there was a burger on the menu). Both happen to have a lot of good beer, so hashtag winning and all that.

KC has a lot of "burger and beer" type places now, I don't know if this is a national trend. I don't like any of them as well as the two above but they are fine. Blanc is the best.

Five Guys to me is just a fast food burger. It might be a good fast food burger but it is still dry and brown in the middle. No better than In-and-Out and more expensive. People rave about it, maybe the one by my office is just crap.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: johnf on May 05, 2011, 05:24:04 PM
Burger Lab did a piece where they tried to come up with the best mixture for grinding your own, I remember it also had oxtail in it.  They said if just go with one cut (best compromise), use chuck.  That sous vide part is pretty hardcore...the things we'll do for that 'perfect' burger!

Never tried oxtail, I have tried a lot of different things and the fat ratio is way more important than what cuts you use, IMO.

I'm pretty much a Ruhlman disciple so rather than describing in phillamb168 detail what I do, I will link to the source.

http://ruhlman.com/2009/08/hamburger-technique.html

The key technique from Ruhlman's post, IMO, is grinding twice with the large die. The burgers hold together well and the texture is great.  
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Slowbrew on May 05, 2011, 07:48:04 PM
If your burgers look like ovals in cross-section, then make a little depression in the center of the patties.  When it cooks, it will tend to flatten out.

Don't every press down hard on the burger with a spatula, unless you like dry burgers.

Resting them a few minutes before serving helps as well.  Tent with foil.

I like blue cheese (and bacon as well), but they can also stomp on the flavor of the meat if you use too much.  I know, I just implied there's such as thing as too much bacon...

I assumed you were suggesting too much blue cheese.  You can never have too much bacon.  I had the Blue Cheese Burger at Rock Bottom one day and learned that you can have too much blue cheese.  IHMO a 3/4" thick burger with a 1/2" full slice of blue cheese was a little over powering.  8^)

Paul
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 05, 2011, 08:00:49 PM
Five Guys to me is just a fast food burger. It might be a good fast food burger but it is still dry and brown in the middle. No better than In-and-Out and more expensive. People rave about it, maybe the one by my office is just crap.

It's better than the generic fast food places, but not a lot. I can't stand their fries. Greasy and limp, but they try to make up for that by giving you five pounds of them. Decent tasting burger but agreed that it's too dry.  Nice char, ok to eat as long as you don't put 27 ingredients on top of it.

Looking forward to having an In-and-out double double in San Diego.  It's been years.  If you think of it as a fast food burger, then it's good.  If you think of it as gourmet, then you're disappointed. 

I'll be up in Seattle at the end of the year; I'll save that list of places.  Or I'll just have Tom make me one.   ;)

OK, Weaze, where's the place in Ohio?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Slowbrew on May 05, 2011, 08:03:29 PM
As for the best burger in this area?  BeeBop's has been voted Best Burger in Des Moines for many years and agree.  

They only have a drive through lane and one walk up window with outdoor seating all year round.  The burger is a wide, thin patty.  Chain broiled and set on a soft bun with lettuce, tomato, onion, catsup and mayo dressing mixture that's to die for.  It's messy as all get out and you can't eat it while driving.

The perfect food on the way to my daughter's softball games.

Paul
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 05, 2011, 08:18:50 PM
hey what size (pre cook) do you guys make your patties?  I've been doing 1/3, but its hard to keep from over cooking at that size - 1/2 lb maybe?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 05, 2011, 08:28:34 PM
Size?  Something that fits on the buns you are going to use.  I don't weigh them.  Just do it by hand until it looks right.  But I'm not making them for sale, so it doesn't matter much to me.  My daughter complains if they're too thick, so I make hers thinner.

I'd guess 6 oz, maybe.  Half pound seems like a big burger.  I guess I'd rather have two smaller burgers than one bronto burger.

Overcooking using what method?  I think it's hard to overcook in a cast-iron pan.  On a grill you might have to have two heat zones, depending on your flames. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 05, 2011, 08:38:13 PM

Overcooking using what method? 

I've been overcooking lately on both methods (grill and skillet)

For cast iron, do you use high or medium flame? I've been using high, but I seem to wait too long for that perfect crust and wind up overdoing it - closer to well done than medium which is what I'm targeting.

For grilling, I've been trying to hit it with a high flame for ~1 min to get a nice char and then move to the low flame side to finish cooking, but again I seem to wait too long.

This thread has prompted me to make burgers tomorrow night - I might make one using each method.

Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 05, 2011, 09:19:25 PM
I have an early 1900's hand-crank grinder that's in excellent condition.  I think I'm going meat shopping on my way home this Saturday and until then I'll be chilling the grinder & the grind attachements in the freezer.  :)  

I have a 12:30 - 2:00 appointment on Saturday and I'm brewing Saturday afternoon, so I guess that makes Sunday burger day!  
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tschmidlin on May 05, 2011, 09:37:39 PM
I'll be up in Seattle at the end of the year; I'll save that list of places.  Or I'll just have Tom make me one.   ;)
I'll do my best, but I'll have to practice.  I just can't take the texture of ground beef if it's undercooked. :-\  A good steak - lightly charred on the outside, somewhere between vary rare and medium rare on the inside.  As soon as you grind up that good steak - medium well.  I want to like a bleeding burger, I just can't do it.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: johnf on May 05, 2011, 09:52:14 PM
I'll be up in Seattle at the end of the year; I'll save that list of places.  Or I'll just have Tom make me one.   ;)
I'll do my best, but I'll have to practice.  I just can't take the texture of ground beef if it's undercooked. :-\  A good steak - lightly charred on the outside, somewhere between vary rare and medium rare on the inside.  As soon as you grind up that good steak - medium well.  I want to like a bleeding burger, I just can't do it.

So no tartar/mett for you then? I love that stuff, especially mett. Hackepter and Wöllnitzer Weißbier at Gasthausbrauerei Talschänke in Jena is one of the more memorable meals I've had.

I do 5 ounces patties maybe? Smaller than a restaurant bun so similar thickness to a bigger restaurant burger. Medium rarish.I do like my raw minced beef but it needs a bit of a cooked texture to stand up to the bun and the other stuff on it.

Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tschmidlin on May 05, 2011, 10:09:04 PM
So no tartar/mett for you then? I love that stuff, especially mett. Hackepter and Wöllnitzer Weißbier at Gasthausbrauerei Talschänke in Jena is one of the more memorable meals I've had.
I can do tartare if it is the sliced kind but not the minced kind.  I've never heard of mett, but based on descriptions I just read I'm going to say no thanks :)
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 06, 2011, 06:22:23 AM
First rule for me is good meat. But for the love of pete don't buy wagyu or kobe or prime rib or filet mignon or some such crazy thing and GRIND IT.

My blend is: 50% well-marbled chuck, 23% oxtail, 25% sirloin, 2% pork belly (raw, uncured). If I can't get pork belly I use hickory or maple-smoked slab bacon (thick cut, meaning ~1/2" sections, one slice typically).


Didn't want to fill the page quoting you back, but wow.  You really get into it. 

Do you prefer an electric or hand-crank grinder?  I have a couple of old hand-crank ones.  I have never ground my own meat for a burger, but you've inspired me.  I will before this summer is out.  Preferably before this month is out!  ;) 

I am totally OCD when it comes to cooking, and especially burgers. I could probably stage at El Bulli or something, although I take FOREVER to get things done...

I use a hand-cranked one. It takes more time, but there's no motor to wear out, unless my arm breaks or something. Garage sales or craigslist are the way to go. Mine was new, but it's the same cast iron model as the ones in thousands of grandmothers' kitchens.

Also a worthy electricity-free investment: manual sausage stuffer. It takes more work, but it's nice to know you can still make sausage when the world ends.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 06, 2011, 06:44:44 AM
So no tartar/mett for you then? I love that stuff, especially mett. Hackepter and Wöllnitzer Weißbier at Gasthausbrauerei Talschänke in Jena is one of the more memorable meals I've had.
I can do tartare if it is the sliced kind but not the minced kind.  I've never heard of mett, but based on descriptions I just read I'm going to say no thanks :)

sliced raw beef = carpaccio ;-)

As long as we're talking tartare, I think my favorite tartare is TUNA tartare. Deeeelicious. Next to that, there's a place near the Hôtel de Ville which does amazing tartare, quail egg on top, capers, onion, parsley on the side. Fries on a separate plate. Nom nom.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 06, 2011, 06:45:20 AM

Overcooking using what method? 

I've been overcooking lately on both methods (grill and skillet)

For cast iron, do you use high or medium flame? I've been using high, but I seem to wait too long for that perfect crust and wind up overdoing it - closer to well done than medium which is what I'm targeting.

For grilling, I've been trying to hit it with a high flame for ~1 min to get a nice char and then move to the low flame side to finish cooking, but again I seem to wait too long.

This thread has prompted me to make burgers tomorrow night - I might make one using each method.



I like my burgers to have a little bit of 'overhang' on the bun so I usually go with a thinner 1/2 #/250g burger.

Here's what I do on cast iron: first, get 2 really strong metal spatulas and a new (clean!) paint scraper with a metal blade.
.
IMO the trick to cooking on cast iron is to get it as hot as possible. If you use gas burners for your boil kettle, put the cast iron on that and crank it up to crazy heat time. Thing is, if you want a great crust on cast iron, you gotta use the smash and scrape method. Form your burgers in whatever weight you want, and then (gently) roll each one into an elongated cylinder. They shouldn't have much diameter but should still be able to hold their shape standing up.

Once the iron is hot (no oil needed) sprinkle salt and pepper on a burger and put one on the iron, circle side down. Immediately take your two spatulas, one in each hand, and smash the burger down onto the pan. Knowing how much pressure takes a bit of experimentation. Now, don't touch it! Let it sit there. Then depending on the size of your burger and how well you want it cooked, use the paint scraper and scrape the whole thing off. Again this takes experimentation to get right, you don't want much left in the pan when you scrape it off. Flip, smash again (although a bit less pressure), put on yer cheese or whatnot, wait a couple minutes, put on a bun. You'll get the crust for sure.

Sorry for the super long posts, I love talking about this stuff. FIRE! MEAT! BEER!
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tschmidlin on May 06, 2011, 07:06:58 AM
So no tartar/mett for you then? I love that stuff, especially mett. Hackepter and Wöllnitzer Weißbier at Gasthausbrauerei Talschänke in Jena is one of the more memorable meals I've had.
I can do tartare if it is the sliced kind but not the minced kind.  I've never heard of mett, but based on descriptions I just read I'm going to say no thanks :)

sliced raw beef = carpaccio ;-)

As long as we're talking tartare, I think my favorite tartare is TUNA tartare. Deeeelicious. Next to that, there's a place near the Hôtel de Ville which does amazing tartare, quail egg on top, capers, onion, parsley on the side. Fries on a separate plate. Nom nom.
I stand corrected. :)  Or do I (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steak_tartare)? ;D  You're right though, the sliced raw beef I've had was carpaccio.

For raw meat, especially tuna, I prefer poke (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poke_%28Hawaii%29).  It beats sushi even.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 06, 2011, 07:45:58 AM
So no tartar/mett for you then? I love that stuff, especially mett. Hackepter and Wöllnitzer Weißbier at Gasthausbrauerei Talschänke in Jena is one of the more memorable meals I've had.
I can do tartare if it is the sliced kind but not the minced kind.  I've never heard of mett, but based on descriptions I just read I'm going to say no thanks :)

sliced raw beef = carpaccio ;-)

As long as we're talking tartare, I think my favorite tartare is TUNA tartare. Deeeelicious. Next to that, there's a place near the Hôtel de Ville which does amazing tartare, quail egg on top, capers, onion, parsley on the side. Fries on a separate plate. Nom nom.
I stand corrected. :)  Or do I (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steak_tartare)? ;D  You're right though, the sliced raw beef I've had was carpaccio.

For raw meat, especially tuna, I prefer poke (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poke_%28Hawaii%29).  It beats sushi even.

Going down that road, all I have to say is ceviche.

With fried yucca and that deliciously NON-Peruvian mayonnaise/salsa verde mixture to dip it in.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tschmidlin on May 06, 2011, 08:08:33 AM
Going down that road, all I have to say is ceviche.

With fried yucca and that deliciously NON-Peruvian mayonnaise/salsa verde mixture to dip it in.
Ceviche is good and everything, but it's no poke.  ;D
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 06, 2011, 01:14:52 PM
awesome guys - I'm drooling for dinner and its only 9am!

thanks for the tips - will let you know how it goes.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 06, 2011, 01:54:28 PM
First rule for me is good meat. But for the love of pete don't buy wagyu or kobe or prime rib or filet mignon or some such crazy thing and GRIND IT.

My blend is: 50% well-marbled chuck, 23% oxtail, 25% sirloin, 2% pork belly (raw, uncured). If I can't get pork belly I use hickory or maple-smoked slab bacon (thick cut, meaning ~1/2" sections, one slice typically).


Didn't want to fill the page quoting you back, but wow.  You really get into it. 

Do you prefer an electric or hand-crank grinder?  I have a couple of old hand-crank ones.  I have never ground my own meat for a burger, but you've inspired me.  I will before this summer is out.  Preferably before this month is out!  ;) 

I am totally OCD when it comes to cooking, and especially burgers. I could probably stage at El Bulli or something, although I take FOREVER to get things done...

I use a hand-cranked one. It takes more time, but there's no motor to wear out, unless my arm breaks or something. Garage sales or craigslist are the way to go. Mine was new, but it's the same cast iron model as the ones in thousands of grandmothers' kitchens.

Also a worthy electricity-free investment: manual sausage stuffer. It takes more work, but it's nice to know you can still make sausage when the world ends.

My hand-crank, antique but mint contidion grinder and the dies for it are sitting in the freezer as I type this.  ;D 

I may break down and do it tonight instead of Sunday.  The only real plans I have for tonight are a few errands on the way home from work (I already got my cider bottled to make fridge space for my Oktoberfest Lager on Saturday).  I guess I can add two more errands to stop for: 1. Some sirlion, some chuck, some slab bacon and maybe some oxtail.  2. Fresh lettuce, onions and tomatoes, cheese and the perfect buns. 

Damn, now I'm hungry for dinner too, and where I am it's only 6:55AM!  lol
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 06, 2011, 02:39:08 PM
It goes against conventional wisdom, but hey, that's what I'm all about: if you find your burgers are overcooked by the time it takes to get the crust you want, then have you considered chilling the patties before you put them in the pan?  The only other thing I can think of is to make them a bit thicker.

Cast iron, medium-hot for me. And I use a little oil.  Heresy, I know.  I don't want them burned, and I don't want them to stick to the pan.  Yes, it's a well-seasoned Lodge pan, but you can get things to stick if you try.

In general, when I fry something in a pan, I'm looking mostly for the oil to not be on fire, and the tone of the sizzle to be lively but not angry.  Food usually releases when it's cooked as long as you don't move it around.  Touch the food to check doneness.

I'm sure other ways work.  With the weather cooperating, I'm more likely to have them on the grill now.  I use the pan when it's cold or raining.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 06, 2011, 02:51:41 PM
gordon - chilling might be the answer - I guess I've always figured it was like steak where you want them out for 30-40 min before cooking - but that may help - will try tonight.

planning on grilling two and making two in the skillet on the side burner to compare- weather is too beautiful to not be outside.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: dbeechum on May 06, 2011, 02:54:15 PM
I don't know if my  tricks have already been mentioned, but here they are:

- add a panade to the meat mixture. For that I take 2 slices of good thick white sandwich bread for every 1.5 lb of ground 80/20, remove the crusts and process into big crumbs. I then mix that with a small amount of high fat dairy until the bread is thoroughly wet, but there's no loose liquid in the bowl

 - After mixing the panade and a little Worcestershire sauce thoroughly with the meat, I'll break the meat into X even portions (where X is the number of target burgers) and shape gently using thumb pressure to make the burger look more like a pizza crust (thick rim, skinny middle).

 - Into the fridge for 30 minutes to chill and firm up and then a hot as hell grill or cast iron griddle.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 06, 2011, 06:33:36 PM
sliced bread also happens to be an excellent way to clean a meat grinder - when everything is done, just run a few pieces through and it's way easier to clean
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 06, 2011, 06:43:11 PM
I heard someone recommend running some wadded up Saran Wrap through it too.  Never tried it, so I don't know how well that works.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 09, 2011, 04:13:40 PM
made the burgers friday night - keeping cold till ready to cook helped immensely - nice and pink in the middle!

Still undecided on if grilling or skillet - they were both incredible and it was a little tough to actually distinguish aside from the grill marks.

thanks for the tips!
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 09, 2011, 04:35:13 PM
Excellent.  Glad it worked for you.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: maxieboy on May 09, 2011, 08:56:26 PM
made the burgers friday night - keeping cold till ready to cook helped immensely - nice and pink in the middle!

Still undecided on if grilling or skillet - they were both incredible and it was a little tough to actually distinguish aside from the grill marks.

thanks for the tips!

Burgers on the grill(charcoal of course) are WAY better than in the skillet IMO. Use some soaked mesquite chips to send them over the top...
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 09, 2011, 08:58:48 PM
Burgers on the grill(charcoal of course) are WAY better than in the skillet IMO. Use some soaked mesquite chips to send them over the top...

I got home from work late and didn't have time to break out my Weber, I grilled on my gas one.  Doh...
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: maxieboy on May 09, 2011, 09:26:44 PM
Ah, got ya. I gave away my gas grill about 10 yrs ago...
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 09, 2011, 11:05:32 PM
I still have my gas grill for convenience, but I don't use it much anymore.  I use my smoker much more - though I will use the grill for the occasional steaks or a quick couple of pieces of chicken. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 10, 2011, 08:15:57 AM
made the burgers friday night - keeping cold till ready to cook helped immensely - nice and pink in the middle!

Still undecided on if grilling or skillet - they were both incredible and it was a little tough to actually distinguish aside from the grill marks.

thanks for the tips!

Burgers on the grill(charcoal of course) are WAY better than in the skillet IMO. Use some soaked mesquite chips to send them over the top...

This weekend I tried a combination - smash & seared them for about a minute on each side to get a nice crust on the cast iron inside, tented with foil to let them rest a bit, then finished them on the grill with the lid closed so the cheese could melt. You keep the sear from the pan no matter what, and by finishing on the grill all those lovely lipophilic compounds in the charcoal smoke get bonded to the meat. Crust + smokiness = perfect.

I think this is my next burger though - http://eater.com/archives/2011/05/06/dave-arnold-makes-the-burger-of-the-future.php

Bacon + meat glue = bacon disc == awesome.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: johnf on May 10, 2011, 09:40:25 AM
I heard someone recommend running some wadded up Saran Wrap through it too.  Never tried it, so I don't know how well that works.

Probably doesn't clean it as well as several slices of bread but you don't waste several slices of bread and it definitely gets out all of the big chunks. When grinding 10 ounces for two burgers it sucks to lose that ounce or so you don't get if you don't push it out with something. I am more worried by that than cleaning, which is easy enough manually for the stand mixer attachment grinder I use.

I did bread a few times and then tried plastic and never went back. I was worried it would grind up the plastic into the meat but it all stays intact, it can't push it through the die at all.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 10, 2011, 01:10:28 PM
made the burgers friday night - keeping cold till ready to cook helped immensely - nice and pink in the middle!

Still undecided on if grilling or skillet - they were both incredible and it was a little tough to actually distinguish aside from the grill marks.

thanks for the tips!

Burgers on the grill(charcoal of course) are WAY better than in the skillet IMO. Use some soaked mesquite chips to send them over the top...

This weekend I tried a combination - smash & seared them for about a minute on each side to get a nice crust on the cast iron inside, tented with foil to let them rest a bit, then finished them on the grill with the lid closed so the cheese could melt. You keep the sear from the pan no matter what, and by finishing on the grill all those lovely lipophilic compounds in the charcoal smoke get bonded to the meat. Crust + smokiness = perfect.

I think this is my next burger though - http://eater.com/archives/2011/05/06/dave-arnold-makes-the-burger-of-the-future.php

Bacon + meat glue = bacon disc == awesome.

couldn't you just put the skillet on the grill to do that? (I've been thinking of this myself).
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 11, 2011, 02:58:45 PM
Tonight's the night.  I'm going home after work today, grinding up my meat & making some burgers!

I have to grind:

1.3lbs Sirloin
1.3lbs Brisket
2.3lbs Oxtail (Weight includes bone & sliverskin - will use 1.3lbs of actual meat/fat)

I'm still trying to decide on the cheese & other toppings.  Sean Paxton (The Homebrew Chef) has suggested smoked gouda and caramelized shallots & garlic (pair w/ a porter). 

I may go that way, but I'm also considering bleu cheese or possibly swiss w/ sauteed mushrooms & onions. 

I can't wait.  This will be my first time ever grinding my own beef.  :) 


EDIT: I think I'm going bacon & bleu w/ grilled shallots.  :) 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: tschmidlin on May 11, 2011, 04:28:14 PM
I think for your first time you should stick to salt and pepper to really get an appreciation for what you've done. ;)
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 11, 2011, 04:39:29 PM
I think for your first time you should stick to salt and pepper to really get an appreciation for what you've done. ;)

Oh, believe me, I'll be having more than one burger tonight.  ;) 

My wife is the minimalist.  She'll eat just the patty w/ next to nothin' on it.  She's almost become vegetarian - nearly never eats meat anymore. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 03:07:59 AM
The hand grinder was a bit of work, but it was well worth the effort:

3lbs of fresh ground beef.  Equal parts sirloin, brisket & oxtail - you can see the box for the grinder behind the cutting board:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/230075_1874698279334_1597506659_1858775_3558741_n.jpg)

The buns.  Soft yet firm, and just the right size:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/226219_1874698519340_1597506659_1858777_6429712_n.jpg)

The cheese (this will be a mushroom & swiss burger):
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/227436_1874698679344_1597506659_1858778_161014_n.jpg)

The mushrooms, simmering in worcestershire sauce & red wine:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/227222_1874698399337_1597506659_1858776_4433631_n.jpg)

The mold:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/228396_1874699039353_1597506659_1858780_5850159_n.jpg)

The mold w/ a patty inside:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/228105_1874699199357_1597506659_1858781_7000970_n.jpg)

The patties, ready to go (I chilled them in the fridge for a bit before cooking):
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/228145_1874699439363_1597506659_1858782_7652961_n.jpg)

A closer look at one of the buns - about to be toasted in the oven:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/224600_1874699719370_1597506659_1858783_1501964_n.jpg)

A patty in the cast iron skillet:
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/227319_1874699879374_1597506659_1858784_5106558_n.jpg)

The finshed product, with it's accompaniment (My own IPA isn't ready yet...):
(https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/229250_1874700039378_1597506659_1858785_2089990_n.jpg)

As I said - it was well worth the effort.  Absolutely delicious.  :) 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 03:11:50 AM
Nice job.  Good call on the buns.  Restaurant style hat's off presentation too.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 03:17:56 AM
Nice job.  Good call on the buns.  Restaurant style hat's off presentation too.

Thanks.  Tomorrow I'll be doing a bacon & bleu burger.  ;D 

I'll have to freeze the rest of the ground beef after tomorrow though.  I gound too much!  lol  I'll probably form it all into patties before freezing it.  ;) 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: blatz on May 12, 2011, 03:23:20 AM
Nice job.  Good call on the buns.  Restaurant style hat's off presentation too.

Thanks.  Tomorrow I'll be doing a bacon & bleu burger.  ;D 

I'll have to freeze the rest of the ground beef after tomorrow though.  I gound too much!  lol  I'll probably form it all into patties before freezing it.  ;) 

dude, there would be something wrong with you if you could polish off ~4lbs of beef in one sitting.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 01:07:42 PM
I'm in shock!   :o

My wife is a burger 'minimalist'.  She usually just wants a patty - period.  Not even a bun.  She'll eat it on a plate with a fork & knife.   

She got home late last night, so just before I went to bed I cooked her up a patty and put it on a plate in the microwave just to keep warm until she got home a short time later.  There were still some leftover mushrooms in the pan from my burger when I went to bed - easily enough for another burger.

Well, this morning the mushrooms were gone and... *gasp* a BUN was missing!  Holy....  what the?  Did my wife have her burger on a bun with mushrooms (possibly even a slice of cheese?  Can't confirm that one.)  Wow!  lol 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 02:11:34 PM
My wife is a burger 'minimalist'.  She usually just wants a patty - period.  Not even a bun.  She'll eat it on a plate with a fork & knife.   

I like that too, but I call it 'meatloaf'.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 02:15:26 PM
My wife is a burger 'minimalist'.  She usually just wants a patty - period.  Not even a bun.  She'll eat it on a plate with a fork & knife.   

I like that too, but I call it 'meatloaf'.

Lol.  Yep.  And I may make a meatloaf w/ some of what I gound too.  I gound 3lbs worth and only made four 1/3lb patties last night.

Tonight I'll be making homemade fries to go w/ the burger (Yep - another one.  It was too damn good!).  Last night I was out of white vinegar and too low on oil. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 02:23:14 PM
White vinegar?  What's that for?  I've used malt vinegar on fries or used white wine vinegar to make mayonnaise to have with fries but not used white vinegar for anything.

You could also make meatballs with the ground beef.  Eggs, bread soaked in milk, onion, garlic, basil, parmesan, season.  Yum.  If you make a bunch bake them rather than pan-frying them.  You get more of them done and they still brown up nicely.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 02:29:49 PM
White vinegar?  What's that for?  I've used malt vinegar on fries or used white wine vinegar to make mayonnaise to have with fries but not used white vinegar for anything.

You could also make meatballs with the ground beef.  Eggs, bread soaked in milk, onion, garlic, basil, parmesan, season.  Yum.  If you make a bunch bake them rather than pan-frying them.  You get more of them done and they still brown up nicely.

I wanted to try the 'perfect fries (http://aht.seriouseats.com/archives/2010/05/the-burger-lab-how-to-make-perfect-mcdonalds-style-french-fries.html)' recipe over at burger lab.  It calls for a little white vinegar in the water you boil them in.  I have some apple cider vinegar & could probably have used that, but I was also too low on oil (and I'd prefer to use peanut oil - which I'm out of). 

And here is why you want the vinegar:

"I tried bringing two pots of cut potatoes to a boil side by side, the first with plain water, and the second with water spiked with vinegar at a ratio of one tablespoon per quart. Here's what I saw."

"The fries boiled in plain water disintegrated, making them nearly impossible to pick up. When I added them to the hot oil, they broke apart even further. On the other hand, those boiled in the vinegared water remained perfectly intact, even after boiling for a full ten minutes. When fried, they had fabulously crisp crusts with tiny, bubbly, blistered surfaces that stayed crisp even when they were completely cool."
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 02:32:42 PM
Boiling fries in water?  That's odd.  Can you post a link?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 02:35:00 PM
I guess I should say that I normally do fries in peanut oil.  Cook them twice, once at lower temps to cook, and once at higher temps to crisp. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 02:38:13 PM
Boiling fries in water?  That's odd.  Can you post a link?

The link is the words 'Perfect Fries' in the post above.  ;) 

The logic in the article seems sound - so I'm gonna give 'em a shot & see if I can make the perfect fries, right at home. 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: phillamb168 on May 12, 2011, 03:09:54 PM
Boiling fries in water?  That's odd.  Can you post a link?

The link is the words 'Perfect Fries' in the post above.  ;) 

The logic in the article seems sound - so I'm gonna give 'em a shot & see if I can make the perfect fries, right at home. 

Because these freeze so well, I always do the burger lab recipe. My fries are better than McDonald's for crispiness, frankly. I love Kenji
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 12, 2011, 03:26:39 PM
Boiling fries in water?  That's odd.  Can you post a link?

The link is the words 'Perfect Fries' in the post above.  ;) 

The logic in the article seems sound - so I'm gonna give 'em a shot & see if I can make the perfect fries, right at home. 

Because these freeze so well, I always do the burger lab recipe. My fries are better than McDonald's for crispiness, frankly. I love Kenji
That perfect fries article is good imo.  I've been saying for years that frozen fries are better (I made the homemade fries at TGI Fridays for years).  Some people don't want to gives Mickey D's their props for their fries...then they'll say how good Five Guys fries are (those are the most amateur-ish fries I think I've ever seen in a restaurant).  But to each his own (imo, fry a potato and salt it and it's not really going to suck unless you completely screw it up).
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 12, 2011, 03:35:10 PM
For the freeze before frying method (which I won't be using tonight, obviously), do you want to do the 50 second fry before freezing them or just the vinegar/water boil? 
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 12, 2011, 04:29:09 PM
For the freeze before frying method (which I won't be using tonight, obviously), do you want to do the 50 second fry before freezing them or just the vinegar/water boil? 
You do the vinegar/water boil, then the first fry, then freeze, then the final fry.  If you look at that article, there is a 'Get the recipe' link that gives you a step-by-step.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: gordonstrong on May 12, 2011, 06:54:55 PM
So the final frying is while the fries are still frozen?  Or do you defrost them first?
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: SpanishCastleAle on May 12, 2011, 07:27:26 PM
So the final frying is while the fries are still frozen?  Or do you defrost them first?
Still frozen.
Title: Re: May is National Hamburger Month
Post by: Beer Monger on May 13, 2011, 12:52:38 PM
I got too sidetracked last night.  I still managed another burger (just w/ the 'basics': Cheddar, lettuce, tomato & red onion), but I didn't have time for the fries.  What I'm probably gonna do is prepare some tonight.  I'll flash fry & then freeze them - and they fry them up tomorrow to bring along to the 'Meet & Greet' for the Flying BIke Coop Brewery.  :)