Friday, July 24, 2009

Steakhouse Burgers from Grass Fed Beef

What makes steakhouse burgers so much better than those made at home? Why do our burgers lack those seemingly elusive qualities of the perfect burger? In my opinion those qualities include deeply charred, beefy flavor and a richness without the slick waxiness that mars most burgers made with beef that is overly fatty. You want a burger that is as juicy and rich as those found in the best steak house burgers.

Organic Cooking: Steakhouse Burgers from Grass Fed Beef

1-2 slices bread (crusts removed) and cut into 1/2 inch pieces about 1 cup
1/4 cup milk
1.5lb grass fed ground beef
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 medium garlic cloves minced or pressed through garlic press
Olive oil
4 rolls or buns

1. Place bread in small bowl, add milk, and let mixture sit until saturated, about 5 minutes. Using fork, mash bread and milk until they form smooth paste. Break up beef into small pieces in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper, garlic and bread paste. Using a fork or hands, lightly knead together so that ingredients are well incorporated and mixture forms cohesive mass. Divide meat into 4 equal portions. Using hands, toss each portion of meat back and forth to form a loose ball, then gently flatten each ball into 3/4 inch thick patty.

2. Light a large chimney starter filled with charcoal (6 quarts, about 100 briquettes) and burn until coals are fully ignited and partially covered with thin layer of ash, about 20 minutes. Build a modified two-level fire by arranging coals over half of grill, leaving the other half empty and making sure coals are in an even layer. Position cooking grate over coals, cover grill, and heat grate until hot, about 5 minutes; scrape grate clean with a grill brush. Grill is ready when coals are medium hot.

3. Lightly dip a wad of paper towels in olive oil; holding wad with tongs, wipe cooking grate. Grill burgers on hot side of grill, uncovered, until well seared on first side, 2-4 minutes. Using a wide metal spatula, flip burgers and continue grilling about 3 minutes for medium-well or 4 minutes for well-done. While burgers grill, toast buns on the cooler side of the grill, rotating buns as necessary to toast evenly. Serve burgers on toasted buns.

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