Can we eat onions and tomatoes together?
Make the perfect burger yourself
Cancel your order — we'll eat at home!
Everyone understands a perfect burger to be something different. With the current burger hype, the motto is usually: The more (unusual) ingredients, the better! From the juicy smash burger to the gourmet version with truffle, the unbelievably realistic meatless patties from the USA, which are currently so popular, or the tried and tested portobello mushroom - the increasingly diverse selection suggests that we will continue to find endless, delicious ones in the future Dreaming of burger variations. But the question that has persisted since researching this topic and that will perhaps also divide opinions today is: What is it that makes “the” perfect burger?
If you already know my opinion on grilled cheese sandwich or tiramisu, you know that my first goal is to perfect the classic, which then gets your personal touch. I suspect we'll never come up with a common denominator when it comes to burgers - and that's okay. Nevertheless, we can find out together which basic ingredients give a burger its name and how we can also get it perfect at home. A prime example is the cheeseburger in all its glory: a soft roll, plus a beef patty with light roasted aromas, perfectly melting cheese, sour cucumber and some onion, fresh lettuce and juicy tomato - and not to forget the spicy burger sauce.
If you can beat this classic, there is no going back and you can put together the burger of your dreams. Whether classic, vegan or veggie, we have the right tips & tricks for you here. Let us know in the comments which variation is your favorite.
Burger buns - make it yourself or buy it?
The answer to this question really just depends on how much time you have before your initial burger appetite turns into a loud stomach growl. If you have to go quickly: off to the supermarket! But if you have planned a few hours to prepare, you can bake restaurant-suspicious burger buns at home. The dough needs about 2.5 hours to rest and rise, but only 12 minutes in the oven. Here you can find our favorite burger bun recipe:
If you have decided to buy and are now standing in front of the supermarket shelf with the burger buns, you probably have the choice between classic buns with sesame seeds or brioche buns. You can of course choose the type that you like best, but remember: some buns are better for a certain type of burger than others.
The classic beef burger tastes good with both options, but the airy burger buns sprinkled with sesame seeds go particularly well with a fish burger, for example, while pulled pork or coleslaw are the perfect counterparts to buttery brioche. Alternatively, you can also use ciabatta or flatbread for burger-like creations. Regardless of what you choose, before you fry your patties in the pan, you should always toast your burger buns lightly and set them aside until they are occupied.
Make hamburger patties yourself - that's how it works!
If you want to prepare a really great burger at home, there is no way around homemade patties. A classic, juicy beef patty consists of coarse ground beef with a lot of fat (keep an eye out for the distinctive marbling). A fat content of 20% is the general benchmark for this, but it can even be up to 40%. Since the patty is the heart of your burger, the following applies (as always): Reach for the best quality and the freshest meat! If you buy the meat from a butcher you trust, you can even ask him if he can process the meat fresh for you. A higher fat content results in a juicier burger that contracts inside out as you cook. Mmmh!
Some people also add spices to burger patties, but if you've already invested money in a high-quality piece of meat, you want to taste what you paid for too, right? For me, therefore, salt, pepper and an egg are sufficient for binding (1 egg for 450 g of meat).
To shape the patties, first roll a portion of meat into a ball and flatten it a little to make a thick slice. Run your hands along the edge of the patty to close any cracks. Alternatively, you can use a burger press to bring your patties into perfect shape.
Finished molded? Then it's time to roast! Heat a pan with some canola or sunflower oil over medium-high heat. Sear your burger patties on both sides until they are well browned. Just like with steaks, you can set the cooking level to suit your taste, which is why buying fresh meat is so important. I personally prefer my patties to be medium and juicy!
Which cheese is best for burgers?
Although a burger doesn't always have to be topped with cheese, it is essential for many people. Here's my secret burger tip: if you use cheese, always melt it! For this reason, I consider harder cheeses such as Cheddar, Gouda, Monterey Jack or Emmentaler to be the best choices. Plus, a burger is one of those rare occasions where nobody's going to judge you for using melted slice cheese for nostalgia — you know, the gummy orange cheese with the questionable ingredient list. Use the chance!
As soon as you have turned your patty while roasting, place a thin slice (or several thin slices) of your cheese on it - you can of course combine several types. If the cheese needs a little help with melting, you can put a lid on the pan for about 30 seconds.
When it comes to sauces found on burgers, the usual suspects are: ketchup, mayonnaise and BBQ sauce. But maybe you've heard of this one sauce that goes by the very official sounding name of “burger sauce”.
The good news: “burger sauce” can be made very quickly and easily from ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen at this point. As a base, mix 2 parts mayonnaise, 1 part ketchup and 1 teaspoon mustard. In the next step you can season the base according to your taste, e.g. B. with cucumber relish, smoked paprika powder, chipotle sauce, garlic or onion powder. The result should be a spicy, slightly sweet and, if you like, smoky burger sauce.
Which salad ingredients belong on a burger?
Salad and vegetables have their place on a burger — we probably agree on that. Nevertheless, a burger is probably not the right opportunity to fix your possible vitamin deficiency and turn your burger into a kind of vegetable pan. The space between the bun halves is limited, so use it wisely and only focus on vegetables that will make your burger juicier and crunchier!
I've seen burgers on which Frisèe and Lollo Rosso lolled elegantly - and unfortunately I ate them too. Lax and soft are probably the best descriptions for it. Instead, it is better to use crisp salads such as iceberg or romaine lettuce. You can cut them into strips to make them easier to eat. This burger topping even has a name in English: Shrettuce. If you want to learn more about different types of salad, I recommend our detailed article.
For a burger, you should always choose ripe tomatoes. If they're not in season, leave them out instead of using tasteless tomatoes. In addition, tomatoes that are too watery with many seeds are not recommended. Meaty beef heart tomatoes are the perfect choice for burgers, even if, unfortunately, they are rarely found.
We will not discuss sliced pickles at this point. They are an absolute must because they balance the otherwise very heavy components of your burger.
I love the bite of raw onions on a burger — they're slightly crunchy at the beginning and then soften. I prefer the slightly sweeter red onion instead of the white version, but it doesn't matter which onion type you choose - the main thing is that you don't forget it! Cut the onion into thin rings or finely chop for the retro fast food burger style. If you don't like the spiciness of the onion, caramelize it in the pan until it's soft and sweet - cooked this way, they go perfectly with BBQ sauce.
The burger construction kit: this is how you fill it up!
Starting with the burger bun:
1. Smear your bun with burger sauce (or ketchup if you use it)
2. Place the burger patty with its coat of melted cheese on top
3. Onions, pickles, tomatoes and lettuce follow
4. Spread mayonnaise (if you use it) on the second half of the bun and place the bun lid on the burger!
5 ideas for your next burger
Now that you know how to put together a classic hamburger, you can also dare to try other variants, e.g. B. with fried chicken, lamb, pulled pork or fish!
Burger recipes to try right away
What is the “perfect burger” for you? Let us know in the comments!
Published on June 22, 2019
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