Salt-cooked Burger

One of my favorite quick and easy weeknight meals is this burger.  They are so simple, so fast, and so versatile that they are just the ideal thing to have up your sleeve when you really don’t have any creative cooking juices.

Burger and potato soup

Burger and potato soup

The best part?  They are cooked indoors without any added fat!  Because, science.  More specifically, something about the Maillard reaction and about salt drawing out the juices to the outside, while keeping the inside juicy and delicious.  I’ve heard of this method used on steaks, and in fact, my friends P&P once made us  a steak that had been cured in salt for a good few hours.  It was one of the best steaks I’ve ever had, and I’m guessing it works on a similar science.

Mr. Little Fish is most definitely a turkey burger man, but we’ve also made this with beef and venison.  Every time I make these he gives me a very sincere, “This is a good burger.”  I keep it very simple with just some chives, black pepper, and garlic powder.  I would not recommend putting salt in the mixture since the salt will absorb into the patty during the cooking process.  You’ll also notice that I don’t eat the burgers with buns.  While I am not on a strictly carb-free diet, I noticed that once I stopped eating them, I started to realize that some (most) things don’t need them after all!  Plus, I’d rather spend those calories on a piece of dark chocolate after the burger. 😉

Salt-cooked Burger
Inspired by What Einstein Told His Cook
Serves 4

Turkey patties on a salt bed

Turkey patties on a salt bed

Ingredients:

1 lb ground turkey or other ground meat
2 green onions, sliced thin
Black pepper
Garlic powder
Onion powder (optional)
Kosher salt
A meat thermometer
Burger toppings of your choice

Directions:

1.  Combine ground turkey, onions, and spices in a bowl.
2.  Form the mixture into 4 patties, making sure they are about the same thickness.
3.  Heat about 1 tsp kosher salt in a skillet over high heat.  Let it heat for 3-4 minutes, until lightly smoking.
4.  Place the burgers in the skillet, making sure not to overcrowd them or they will steam.
5.  DO NOT TOUCH THEM.  Do not poke, prod, get worried about the smoke.  Just let them cook for 3 minutes.
6.  I like to redistribute/add a little bit more salt between sides, so after the 3 minutes, I remove the burgers, cooked side down, onto a plate, and sprinkle a little more salt in the pan.  Then, I put place the burgers, raw side down, back into the pan for another 3 minutes.
7.  Around the 3 minute mark, stick your meat thermometer into the side of the patty (do not go through the top), and make sure that the internal temperature is at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit.  This step is less important for beef, whose temperature will vary according to the doneness you prefer.
8.  Once you are good to go on temperature, remove the burgers from the pan, put them on the buns or plate, and top with cheese slice so it melts.  Top with other fixings and enjoy!

Added spicy guacamole, lettuce, and tomato

Added spicy guacamole, lettuce, and tomato

NOTE:  I have definitely doubled the recipe, and then frozen half of the uncooked patties.  I used parchment paper to separate the 4 patties, stuck them in a plastic ziplock, and then left them in the freezer until the next time I wanted to cook them.  Then, when you’ve planned to have burgers, just take them out of the freezer in the morning before work so that they are ready to go when you get home!

Salt-cooked Burger
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground turkey or other ground meat
  • 2 green onions, sliced thin
  • Black pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder (optional)
  • Kosher salt
  • A meat thermometer
  • Burger toppings of your choice
Directions
  1. Combine ground turkey, onions, and spices in a bowl.
  2. Form the mixture into 4 patties, making sure they are about the same thickness.
  3. Heat about 1 tsp kosher salt in a skillet over high heat. Let it heat for 3-4 minutes, until lightly smoking.
  4. Place the burgers in the skillet, making sure not to overcrowd them or they will steam.
  5. DO NOT TOUCH THEM. Do not poke, prod, get worried about the smoke. Just let them cook for 3 minutes.
  6. I like to redistribute/add a little bit more salt between sides, so after the 3 minutes, I remove the burgers, cooked side down, onto a plate, and sprinkle a little more salt in the pan. Then, I put place the burgers, raw side down, back into the pan for another 3 minutes.
  7. Around the 3 minute mark, stick your meat thermometer into the side of the patty (do not go through the top), and make sure that the internal temperature is at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit. This step is less important for beef, whose temperature will vary according to the doneness you prefer.
  8. Once you are good to go on temperature, remove the burgers from the pan, put them on the buns or plate, and top with cheese slice so it melts. Top with other fixings and enjoy!

 

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  1. Pingback: Valentine’s Day Chicken Soup | Gwen's Fish Food

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