Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Grilling burgers

My burgers are a hit in my house so I thought I would share my tips.
Ingreds (all mostly estimates since I eyeball everything):
  • 2 lbs your fav ground beef
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • S&P to taste
  • 2 TBSP parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 3 TBSP chopped Italian parsley
  • 2-3 TBSP of your fav onion, diced
Tip 1: I think its important to not overwork/overmix ground beef when combining ingredients for burgers, meatlof, etc. If overworked, I find the end result to be chewy which feels like its overcooked. To help avoid this I put a pound of beef in the bowl, add all of the ingredients, then add the second pound of beef. Mix.
Tip 2: I don't handle the meat too long when I'm forming the patty either. I take a chunk of meat about the size of a tennis ball and flatten it slightly. When I measured the patties today for the blog they were big, almost as big as my hand. I only get five patties out of 2lbs of beef.
Tip 3: My mom likes the ol' "throw a packet of french onion soup in the meat". And I used to do that but I like the fresh ingredients. The natural moisture from the herbs and onion seem to keep the burger moist and obviously has less sodium than a dried soup mix.
Tip 4: Invest in a griling book by Steven Raichlen. I have the "How to Grill; BBQ Bible" cookbook. Its AMAZING and its a book Adam and I both use and refer to almost every time we grill. It would make a great Father's Day gift actually. Raichlen grills everything from creme brulee to red cabbage to Beer-Can chicken. We have had this book since 2005 but if anyone is a Top Chef freak like Adam and I are, you will take comfort in knowing that Tom Colicchio gave it a thumbs up and said it's a "how-to guide for anyone passionate about grilling".

Its so hard to talk about cooking temps and time, as least for me anyway. Just today I had our gas grill to 350 then my husband came and cranked up to 400. So one side cooked at 350 and the other side at 400. One thing I know is they cook close to ten minutes on the first side. The second side is usually less time. But when I see them and think, hmmmm maybe I should cook them a tad longer, I take them off the grill. I put them on a glass plate and throw a sheet of foil over them. I let them sit for at least 10 minutes - cooking in their own juices. I never regret it. They are perfectly done and juicy.

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