Thursday, May 3, 2012


I made hamburgers for supper last night. Roger said afterwards he does not care if he ever eats another restaurant hamburger again ... as far as he is concerned the best hamburgers are the ones I make. Makes a girl feel good, you know?

I have a complicated relationship with meat protein, going back to my childhood. Apparently, as a very young child I would devour any flesh willingly. My mother tells me that I was especially fond of the fat on roast. I know that I liked bologna as well because it was bologna that turned me off of meat for years. I had apparently eaten several fried bologna and mayonnaise sandwiches and gotten ill soon after. I refused to eat any meat at all, especially processed foods such as bologna and wieners. Even now, at 53, I do not eat bologna, hot dog wieners, kielbasa, summer sausage, salami and numerous other processed meat products. I also did not eat eggs for years, and still do not like commercial mayonnaise on a sandwich. {odd, isn't it, that my system knew mayonnaise was made from eggs?

Gradually over time, I began to eat red meat, and chicken. But no fat! Bacon has to be crispy, steak very well trimmed, roast and ham I pick apart like I am in tenth grade biology class. Hamburger has always been difficult for me. For years, I have preferred to purchase a roast, have it trimmed, and either get it ground at the market or grind it myself. I began doing this about 23 years ago.

Anyway, back to the hamburgers. Round roast, ground. Patties thin, fried in an iron skillet with a bit of bacon fat and butter. Seasoned with an all-purpose seasoning like Old Bay or Lawry's Seasoned Salt. Fry without pressing, moving around, or turning until they are very well browned, caramelized even. Turn, repeat. This will give you a moist interior and a crunchy good exterior.

Place the patties on the bottom half of a hamburger bun straight from the skillet, still hot. Top with your choice of cheese (provolone, pepper jack, cheddar, american) immediately. Our preferred toppings are sliced tomato (last night I used Roma), thinly sliced onion, sweet hot pepper rings* and either mayonnaise (Roger) or spicy brown mustard (Ellen).

Ah. Bliss.

*Sweet hot pepper rings. We purchase these at Sav-A-Lot, a discount grocery store. The brand is Bell-View. They are delicious. The same store has French Roast coffee, their brand, for 6.79. And it is just good as Folgers or Maxwell House.

There you have it. Oh, and I buy roast on sale and freeze it in patties or one pound portions after it is ground.

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