The Perfect Beefburger?

A couple of years ago I wrote a few blog posts on my quest for the perfect burger. Since that time there has been a lot of talk in food supplements and magazines about mastering the ultimate burger and this has been accompanied by an explosion of gourmet burger joints across the country.

In London, you have Patty & Bun, Honest Burgers, Byron, Mother Flipper, Meat Liquor and closer to home in Sheffield, burgers are the main feature at The Harley courtesy of The Twisted Burger Company and you have mobile gourmet burger experts Cow Boys and Mince.

2013-06-13 13.28.59

Cow Boys Burger

Photo 14-07-2012 13 55 30

Honest Burgers

What makes a great burger is pretty subjective, for me it comes down to a few components.

Bread

The bun has to be robust enough to hold your burger throughout the eating and not crumble in your hands.

Patty

Quality meat and at least 20% fat content for a beefburger. You want to end up with a chunky juicy patty that’s oozing meatiness.

Toppings

Keep ‘em simple. I like a few, usually some tangy cheese, pickles and a chutney/sauce.

For me, having pulled pork topping my burger or a stack of onion rings is wrong and a step too far which distracts from the main event.

Chips

Mandatory. Proper chips and not fries, I like mine a bit chunky and with skin on. I also welcome sweet potato chips as an alternative to mix things up.

My perfect burger attempt

As I don’t think that I quite cracked the ‘perfect burger’ this is how my latest effort went.

Burger & Toppings

I brought my mince from Border View Farm shop at Bradway.

200g for each burger. Seasoned with salt and pepper and shaped into patties, ready for cooking. Nothing else added.

IMG_7950

They were pan-fried for roughly 6 minutes either side, cooked medium so there was some pinkness.

IMG_7952

I chose the toppings of fried halloumi with a scattering of dried chilli seeds and pickled red onion.

IMG_7945

IMG_7939

The pickled onion was easy to make, I heated a mix of white wine vinegar, water and sugar, until the sugar had dissolved. This was poured over the sliced red onion and left to pickle away for a couple of hours.

When you are ready to serve, drain and serve on top of your burger.

Bread

I used a Patty & Bun brioche bun recipe featured in May’s Waitrose magazine (the pickled red onion recipe is from the same edition).

IMG_7941

A lot of butter went into these, which scared me. The resulting bake did have a delicious looking yellow colour and glazed top.

IMG_7946

The inside of the buns were toasted to give extra crunch and texture.

Chips

I cooked skin on chips and served them topped with homemade rosemary salt, as inspired from my experience of chips at Honest Burgers.

Was it the perfect burger?

The burger meat was tender and succulent with a satisfying flavour and the right blush of pink. The patty could have been a little juicier though.

IMG_7958

For me, the tangy halloumi and vibrant pink pickled onion tanginess balanced perfectly with the richness of the burger. I’d definitely make the pickled onions again, for the colour as well as the taste.

The bun was sadly a bit disappointing as was a bit dry despite the masses of butter included; maybe I cooked them a little too long. I do think that the Hawksmoor brioche recipe that I have used previously for brioche buns worked better.

The chips were decent, in the absence of owning a deep fat fryer these were oven baked. The rosemary salt gives another dimension and adds something extra to the humble chip.

IMG_7940Rosemary salt

So in conclusion, I didn’t achieve burger nirvana this time and the search for the perfect burger continues….

How do you like yours??

Burger Related Posts

Atomic Burger – Bristol
Perfect Burger Mark III – Pork & Chorizo
Perfect Burger Mark II
Quest for the Perfect Burger
Beefburger with Beetroot
Brixton Village – Honest Burgers
Blas Burgerworks – St Ives