Food - Drink
Common Mistakes Everyone Makes With Hamburgers
By S.G. HOWE
Temperature of the Meat
It’s best to use refrigerated hamburger meat rather than that at room temperature, as the cold keeps the fat intact and melts only when you cook it. Room temperature meat can also render the fat too quickly, causing your patties to fall apart, while frozen patties can take much longer to cook.
Over-Mixing the Meat
When flavoring your patties with veggies, liquids, or spices, never use an electric or stand mixer to combine, as it can ruin the texture of the meat and make it tougher. Instead, wet your hands with cold water and gently mix the ground beef with your hands just enough to incorporate the add-ins.
Not Preheating the Grill
Whether you’re using charcoal, electric, or gas, every grill needs at least 15 minutes to preheat before you start cooking. If you grill on a cold grate, your burger will take much longer to cook — resulting in a tough and dry patty — and the patty will stick to your grill, instead of getting a nice sear.
Not Using Cast Iron
Using a cast iron skillet on the grill helps keep your burger moist by preventing the juices from running down the grates, and, instead, keeping them in the pan for the patty to simmer in. Be sure to thoroughly heat up the skillet and the grill in advance for an even sear and a nice smoky flavor.
Wrong Lean-to-Fat Ratio
The marbling in ground beef enriches its flavor and provides juiciness to a cut of meat that is not inherently tender. So, if your chief complaint is a tough, dried-out burger, or one that is too greasy, choose a meat blend with the correct lean-to-fat ratio — the ideal being 80% lean to 20% fat.