Smashburger

Serves 8   Active Time 15 min.   Total Time 25 min.

Ingredients

 

8 slider rolls, buttered and toasted sauce below, mustard, shredded lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and pickles

 

1lb freshly ground beef chuck, divided into two 2-ounce balls

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 slices good melting cheese, such as american

Lovely Sauce

8 tablespoons mayo

6 tablespoons ketchup

2 tablespoons sweet relish

1 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoon sugar

 

Directions

 

  1. Prepare burger bun by laying toppings on bottom half of bun. Have it nearby and ready for when your burger is cooked.

  2. Preheat a large stainless steel sauté pan or skillet over high heat for 2 minutes. Place balls of beef in pan and smash down with a stiff metal spatula, using a second spatula to add pressure. Smashed patties should be slightly wider than burger bun.

  3. Season generously with salt and pepper and allow to cook until patties are well browned and tops are beginning to turn pale pink/gray in spots, about 45 seconds. Using a bench scraper or the back side of a stiff metal spatula, carefully scrape patties from pan, making sure to get all of the browned bits.

  4. Flip hamburger patties and immediately place a slice of cheese over each patty, Immediately remove from pan and transfer to waiting burger buns. Serve and watch your friends smile as they eat the best cheeseburger ever!

How do you define a smash burger?

Smashing a burger is grabbing a handful of meat and compressing it with a spatula or press.

 

Why smash a burger?

By smashing a burger, you create a golden surface crust, which is caused by a Maillard reaction. The sugars in the proteins caramelize to give the burger a complex and hearty, meaty taste.

 

When should I smash the burger?

Smash the burger 1-5 seconds after placing on grill. If you leave it more that 30 seconds, the meat will cook unevenly and lose too much juice.

 

What type of bun? To toast or not to toast?

Buns are a personal preference. I love a soft potato roll or sesame seed bun brushed with high quality butter. Toasted until golden brown adds another flavor component.

 

What type of cheese should i use on my cheeseburger?

Again, this is personal preference. Use American for the classic Shake Shack or diner experience. Experiment to find your favorite flavor.

 

Big Mac or Animal sauce?

When I first had a Big Mac and fries, I remember taking a couple fries and chasing the excess puddle of sauce around the cardboard carton. It was a game changer for me. I had grown up with ketchup and mustard. Now, I like to create a sauce that's a twist on McDonald’s Big Mac and In and out Burger’s Animal sauce.

 

Other toppings?

There are no wrong answers when topping your hamburger. Iceberg, thinly sliced onion and a plump, ripe slice of tomato always a welcome addition to a classic burger. Sometimes, I love to top my burger with a fried egg. I love it when the Tuscan sun colored yolk breaks and gently oozes down the side of the burger.

 

How can I go wrong?

1. You’ve got the wrong cut of meat. It's important to use meat that has at least 20% fat. I find ground chuck to be best.

2. Meat is at room temperature. Using chilled meat keeps the fat from melting to quickly and keeps the burger moist.

3. Your grill is too hot. You want your grill to be on medium high.

© 2016 Jon Ashton