Savor the Flavor of a Good Burger

12 Jul, 2018

It’s burger season and while we love talking up the new Craft, Burgers & Beer series in Lobby Lounge, Grand Geneva Sous Chef Paul Funk wants to help you at home with some tips on how to make tasty burgers.

Pick the right meat
You want to eat a burger that’s got great beef flavor and holds together when you pick it up.

Fresh ground beef from your local butcher is best. Grand Geneva serves a blend of short rib, chuck and brisket so the patty is tender and flavorful. Ask for a single, medium grind so the meat doesn’t get overworked, leaving you with a hockey puck on a bun.

Don’t buy meat any leaner than 80/20 or you risk having a dry patty. When it comes to burgers, fat is key to juicy meat. And keep it cool! If you let the meat get to room temperature, the fat will melt before it can cook into the beef.

Chef’s tip for forming patties: “Work it between your hands for five or six patty cakes, put it between two sour cream lids, give it a good squish and leave it be.” Don’t overthink it.

Make it tasty
“The biggest thing you can do to improve your burger’s flavor is season it well,” says Chef. He suggests you start with salt and pepper. Leave the table salt on the table. Use a coarse sea salt such as Diamond Crystal so the grains coat the meat without instantly dissolving. Fresh cracked pepper is always a good choice and everyone has it in the kitchen.

We’ve worked with the spice experts at Spiceology to develop unique flavor profiles for our Craft, Burgers & Beer features, including a grass-fed beef burger with Canadian steak rub and a chili coffee rubbed bison burger. Get adventurous as you’d like in this department, just make sure you put enough on the burger to really taste the flavor.

And don’t mix the seasoning in the meat. “You’re not making sausage!” Chef says. Sprinkle the patty once you put it on the grill. Season the other side when you flip it. This way you don’t cook off all the flavor. The minute you add salt to beef, proteins start to break down, resulting in tougher meat, so season as close to cooking as possible.

Whether on a grill, flat top or cast-iron pan, cook the burger to your preference and enjoy! Remember: if you don’t feel like doing the heavy lifting, let Chef make you a delicious burger. Try one of the new craft creations in Lobby Lounge this summer.

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