Food & Drink - - BASICS SOURDOUGH 101 -

Grid­dled all-beef pat­ties topped with gooey cheese and a truly spe­cial sauce, these smash burg­ers are a game changer. Chuck is an ideal cut for burg­ers, as its meat-to-fat ra­tio will en­sure juicy re­sults. A cast-iron pan or grid­dle is es­sen­tial here for the best pos­si­ble crust—the high heat can also dam­age a non­stick pan. If you only have a thin metal spat­ula, you can dou­ble up with an­other spat­ula or cheese slicer to prop­erly press the beef.


1 tbsp (15 mL) finely chopped shal­lot

2 tsp (10 mL) cider vine­gar

6 tbsp (90 mL) may­on­naise (re­duced fat is fine) 2 tbsp (30 mL) ketchup

2 tsp (10 mL) sriracha sauce

1 tsp (5 mL) yel­low mus­tard

½ tsp (2 mL) Worces­ter­shire sauce

Pinch ground cumin


1 lb (500 g) good qual­ity ground beef chuck 2 tsp (10 mL) veg­etable oil

Salt and freshly ground pep­per to taste

4 thin slices pro­cessed cheese

4 soft, medium-size burger buns

16 slices bread-and-but­ter pickles, drained 4 pieces leaf let­tuce (slightly big­ger than bun)

1 For the spe­cial sauce, com­bine shal­lot and vine­gar in a small mix­ing bowl. Let stand 15 min­utes. Stir in rest of in­gre­di­ents. (Sauce will keep, cov­ered and re­frig­er­ated, for 5 days.)

2 Di­vide beef into 4 even por­tions. With min­i­mal han­dling, form each por­tion into a ball.

3 Heat a sea­soned cast-iron grid­dle or large skil­let over a medium heat for 5 min­utes. Turn fan over stove­top on high and raise heat un­der pan to high. Add veg­etable oil and spread with balled-up pa­per towel clutched in tongs. Add beef balls and firmly press each ball down with sturdy metal spat­ula to a 4-inch (10-cm) di­am­e­ter. Sea­son tops with salt and pep­per. Cook, undis­turbed, un­til brown crust forms, about 2 min­utes. Flip, mak­ing sure to get un­der the crust. Sea­son tops with salt and top each patty with cheese slice. Cook un­til burger reaches de­sired done­ness, about 1 minute for medium or 2 min­utes for well done.

4 Smear bun bot­toms gen­er­ously with spe­cial sauce. Top each with patty, 4 pickle slices and let­tuce. Add bun tops and serve im­me­di­ately. Serves 4

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