If ever there was a moment to go all out on your best ever burger, then National Burger Day (22 August) is it. Make your own succulent patties, grill them to perfection and lavish them with all your favourite toppings and sides – we show you how right here.
Warning: serious burger cravings are a guaranteed side effect of this blog.
Simple but tasty burger patties can be made with as little as three ingredients: minced beef, salt and pepper. Finely diced onion is another popular ingredient, as is minced pork – with this you can also make meatballs and you’re not far off a decent Bolognese sauce, minus the tomatoes.
Seasoning the mixture with herbs and spices, like oregano, coriander and paprika, adds more flavour. Or really go to town by stuffing your burgers with surprise ingredients like cheese, jalapenos or relish.
We should mention here that for every meat (and fish) there is a burger, with the likes of ostrich, kangaroo and alpaca joining chicken, turkey and salmon. The same could be said for veg. Whatever your preference, there’s sure to be a recipe just a google-search away.
Cook ‘em up
Once you’re happy with the mixture, divide it into even amounts, roll into balls and pat them into shape. If you want to buck the trend for round patties, go right ahead and mould them into squares, which would fit neatly with the shape of shop-bought packs of rolls.
Another hot tip (or should we say cold?) is to chill the patties in the fridge for about an hour before cooking as this will help to firm them and should stop them from breaking up on the grill.
Build your burger
Pop your perfectly cooked burger in a bun (soft white, brioche, wholemeal, lettuce, then load up with all your favourite toppings. You know all the classics: cheese, ketchup, mustard, mayo, gherkins, salad and so on. But may we suggest a few less obvious ones?
Think great breakfast combos like garlic mushrooms and grilled tomatoes. Bacon is an established burger topping but how about adding a fried egg or a splash of maple syrup?
Surf ‘n turf it by adding fried shrimp to a beef burger. Match the flavour of a pork burger with a slice of grilled apple, and top lamb burgers with feta and mint. When it comes to toppings, the world’s your oyster (ooh – oyster burgers!).