Whether you’ve never made your own burgers before or are a seasoned veteran, her are our top tips on how to make sure they’re perfect every time.
- Using meat with at least 15-20 percent fat will make for a juicier patty; we love using rib-eye mince. We also recommend buying fresh mince rather than pre-made burgers, as this gives you complete control over the flavour and seasoning.
- Be careful not to overmix the burger ingredients and be gentle when forming your patties. Squeezing them together too tightly will make your burgers unappealingly dense and heavy.
- Chicken and turkey burgers are lean and healthy, but rarely visually appealing. Add colour by including herbs like coriander or parsley in the burger mix.
- Your burgers will expand as you cook them, so always use your thumb to make a dimple in the centre of each; this helps to keeps them flat as they cook.
- Once the burger is cooking, try to move it as little as possible to allow for a proper crust to form.
- Don’t use forks to manoeuvre burgers on the pan or barbecue, as this may let precious, flavoursome juices run out.
- If you’re adding cheese, make sure it’s gorgeously gooey before serving.
- Don’t overdo the toppings. The burger patty itself should still be the star of the show, and it shouldn’t be impossible to eat.
- If the unpredictable Irish weather lets you down, cook your burgers on a griddle pan over a high heat or under a hot grill, rather than on the barbecue.
- Use chicken, pork, lamb or turkey mince instead of beef. For a vegetarian option, cook sliced Halloumi or Portobello mushrooms on the barbecue and use in place of the meat patty (or try these delicious mushroom and black bean or beetroot and lentil burgers).
MAKE IT YOURS
For a flavour boost — and to really impress your guests — add one of the following combinations to your basic burger mix:
- 2 chopped uncooked bacon rashers + 3 tbsp grated Cheddar
- 1 tbsp barbecue sauce
- 1 tbsp hot sauce
- 2 crushed garlic cloves + 1 chopped green chilli pepper
- 1 tbsp soy sauce + 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 3 finely chopped mushrooms + 2 tbsp grated Gruyère
- 3 chopped sun-dried tomatoes + 3 chopped olives
- 1 tbsp tomato sauve + 2 tbsp grated Mozzarella + 3-4 chopped basil leaves
- 1 tbsp harissa + 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves