Memorial Day has passed, and summer has officially started for most people. Those of us on this ridiculous quarter system, though, are left only to salivate over our computers and textbooks while we dream about grilling dead animals, onions and big mushrooms, with a cold one in hand. Safe to say, finals are a devil, and burgers a saving grace.
Burgers are, without question, American food. They were invented in New Haven, Conn., and everyone reading this paper who possesses a U.S. passport should go there and worship. If you can’t get to New Haven, hug the constitution.
I make burgers year round, but there is no better time to cook them than when the sun is out and the Midwest mugginess is raging. Some people, in an attempt to be all fancy, will no doubt get real intense about seasoning and preferred types of meat. Everyone has their recipes, so I won’t touch seasoning. But in terms of meat, it’s all about the fat. A relatively high fat ratio is your friend on the pan, or the grates.
Fat carries flavor and, when cooked right, gets all kinds of buttery and smooth in the mouth. There isn’t anything quite like it in the world. Indeed, piling tons of vegetables and sauces on all that meaty, fatty beauty ought be a crime punishable by cattle prod.
All a burger needs, if anything, is some grilled onions or a fried egg with a runny yolk. Egg yolks are insta-sauce. Mustard and Ketchup are best reserved for dipping sides.
Cooking a burger on the rarer side keeps the juices flowing, and when it melds with the egg, there is no stopping the flavor train.
Vegetarians, I am deeply sorry for this meat-centric article, but hey. This is really your loss. Portobellos are delicious, and they may look like burgers, but they’re not.