Our Simple Pleasures

celebrating life one moment at a time

Wow.   That’s all I can say.

Tonight, we made our very own hamburgers.   Really.   I ground the meat from Chuck and Sirloin steaks…….and they. were. to. die for.   I am not quite sure I’ll ever buy ground beef again!  

Check out how easy this is!   We found this article in the Metro Magazine this past March on How to make “Bar burgers” at your house.   We did it today, and they were, in one word, AWESOME.

Here’s how you do it….

Mecca’s bar burger recipe

8 oz sirloin

8 oz chuck

1 T each of freshly chopped thyme and shallot  (I ditched the thyme as I don’t like it, but hey, feel free!)

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

salt & pepper

a good knob of butter

Beef chuck, found on and near a cow’s shoulder bones, is fatty and flavorful. It’s generally used in roasts and stews, but is great for burgers as it gives them a deep, beefy taste. Normally, chuck requires long, slow cooking, but grinding it is a good alternative tenderizing technique. Sirloin, on the other hand, is tender, lean, clean and steak-y. My burger offers the best of both worlds. The knob of butter, by the way, will ensure even fattier flavor.

➼Step 1: First, cube and chill the meat. Next, working in small batches, pulse the meat in an ordinary food processor until it resembles ground beef—about eight to 10 pulses depending on the strength of your machine. You’ll notice a clean, meaty aroma emanating from the bowl, altogether unlike the often funky, bloody scent of pre-ground beef.

➼Step 2: Add your seasonings, including the butter.

➼Step 3: Form patties—about six ounces each—and let them rest to room temperature.

➼Step 4: You’re ready to fry. The best advice I have ever received about cooking meat to the proper temperature is trust your gut. If it seems like you haven’t let things cook long enough, you probably haven’t. If it feels like it’s gone too long, it probably has. Touch is also a great way to gauge if you’re meat is ready (see below) Heat a cast iron skillet to medium-high. Throw your patties on without overcrowding the pan, and leave them alone for about four minutes.

➼Step 5: When the edges begin to look done but the insides are still pink to raw, turn them over. Cook four minutes more. Gently poke the middle of the patty with your index finger. There should be some give, but it shouldn’t feel as soft as raw meat. Somewhere just the other side of that should tell you it’s just about done.

The USDA recommends that beef be cooked to a minimum of 160 degrees internal temperature, but that will result in a hockey puck instead of a deliciously pink burger. Again, grind your own damn beef and eat a burger medium-rare, just this once, for me. Oh, and don’t forget about carryover heat. When you remove food from a cooking source, it continues to cook. Carryover heat is your friend, so long as you respect it. Now remove the patties from the skillet and let rest five minutes.

A word on toppings: Some people think ketchup is essential on a burger, and those people are wrong. Sugar, which is found in abundance in ketchup, has no place near a burger. An alternative: the tiniest dash of malt vinegar, which provides the acid kick of ketchup without masking the beef flavor in sweetness.

Finally, a buttered, grilled bun, with a swipe of mayo is all you need. And because I know I’m not going to win this fight, go ahead and add your cheese of choice to the hot bun. Go on, I won’t look.

That is the recipe as it appears in that issue of Metro.  I rounded out the meal with roasted veggies (Mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash, eggplant, onion, and green pepper) and Tortellini Pesto Salad.   D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S!

***Note, we made ours on the grill……5 minutes on each side, and then we put crumbled Bleu Cheese on them.   WOW!




Categories: life

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