I know burgers are ubiquitous during summer months–topped with aged cheese, sliced avocado, gourmet ketchups. (Burgers are so fancy in Geneva that they regularly cost $37!) But when you come across a burger recipe so good that you don’t want any toppings on it for fear it may distract from the main attraction, you know you’ve found it. Behold: The perfect burger.
I’ve made this burger recipe many times and perfected it until I felt I had just the right flavors and texture. Despite some of its more upscale ingredients, there is nothing trendy about this burger–it’s simply one of those “sure thing” recipes that always hits the spot.
Speaking of ingredients–and I hate to sound like the Barefoot Contessa–but it is important to use a good dijon mustard in the recipe. None of the yellow ballpark variety. I’m a fan of Maille and Grey Poupon. And please don’t add extra cheese because you would like an “extra cheesy” burger–as my husband once did–the burger will fall apart. Moving on to the recipe…
The Perfect Summer Burger (serves four)
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef or turkey
- 1/2 cup finely grated Gruyere cheese
- 3-4 scallions, thinly sliced (should make about 1/3 cup sliced)
- 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
- Dash of freshly ground pepper and salt
- 1 garlic clove, minced
In a bowl, combine all the ingredients with a fork until they are harmonious. Form four patties with your hands, gently cupping the meat together until it has formed a softball sized patty.
Meanwhile, heat either a grill or cast-iron pan on the stove on medium-high heat. Coat the pan or grill with a little olive oil so the patties won’t stick and get cooking! How well done you like a burger is a matter of personal preference. I like mine medium-rare, so I cook each side on high for two minutes. Then, move it to a cooler spot on the grill for another eight minutes or so.
Serve alone with a side salad (seriously, so good!) or on a bun. We use French bread, of course!
I hope you are enjoying all the good food that comes with the summer season this week–especially if you are celebrating the Fourth of July–but for now, a few links:
- Six Common Burger Cooking Mistakes (Bon Appétit)
- How to Cook a Burger: Four Methods (Saveur)
- Cities with the most expensive food: The Club Sandwich Index (CNN) ...guess who is #1?!