Following the trend, we gave a try at making smash burgers… And instantly it became a favorite at our house!
So what’s the deal? Just a flat piece of ground beef? Well not quite! See, when you press that meat unto a very hot surface (and I insist on the VERY HOT), it caramelizes on all of its surface, creating a brown crust of goodness all over your patty!
Listen, I was septic too. After all, we heard for years about the fat juicy burger, and now we want to smash it flat? What can I say, you’re just going to have to try it!
Now, here are a few tips: I first did smash burgers on my stovetop in my beloved cast iron pan. 2 issues: Could only cook one patty at the time and it got really smoky in the house!!!
And, just like if the universe had heard me, one week later, I found the perfect cast iron griddle in a thrift store! Ta-Da! I place the griddle on the BBQ and heat it up to the max, with the lid closed, now that’s hot. And smoke stays outside!
2nd tip, keep it simple. Nothing added to the beef. Although it’s important to choose a fatty type of ground beef, like chuck, or ask your butcher for a 80/20 ratio (20% fat). If that’s not available, I have read (and plan on trying it soon) that you can add shredded pieces of butter or uncooked tiny pieces of bacon fat to your lean ground beef. Pretty much, fatten it up! We want the fat, because we press that burger so thin, that without all the melting fat, it would dry out really fast. Divide the meat in as many patties as you want. We like to stack 2 patties, since they are so thin (3 to 4 ounces each, your preference). Then, just season it while it cooks, no added ingredients to your meat. We love our bacon salt from Amola, and our 5 peppercorn blend, freshly ground. That’s it!
And 3rd tip: press hard! Find something plat and preferably heavy (I use my smallest cast iron pan), and press on that meat as soon as it touches the hot griddle. Press hard until it’s real flat, don’t be shy! BTW, you want to keep your meat loose, so it flattens better. So don’t form hard pressed balls of meat. Just round them up loosely.
Love cheeseburger? Add your sliced cheese after you flipped your patty to have it nice and melty. Then build your burger to your taste. Again, we keep it simple(ish) with some gourmet Ketchup from Joe Beef and yellow mustard from Pied de Cochon (find the product links in the ingredients list).
You honestly gotta to try those smash burgers and report back! I want hear it! Great timing for father’s day, easy, delicious, satisfying BBQ experience!
- Prepare 8 portions of ground beef (2 patties per person). Form them into loose balls. Pre heat your BBQ at the max temperature with either a flat griddle or cast iron pan. You can do this on the stove top too, but aware, it will get smoky! Wait until the griddle or pan is really hot!
- In the meantime, prepare your toppings: slice tomatoes, onions, lettuce… whatever you prefer! But the flavor of the burger is so good, you don't need a lot! Grind your peppercorns if using.
- When your griddle is ready, place as many balls of beef you can fit (beware, they going to get flatten!). And right away, smash them! Using the bottom of a flat pan, or plate, or baking tray, press firmly on the beef until it's completely flat on the griddle! Beware of oil splashes! You way wrap a towel around your hand to protect it.
- Sprinkle some bacon salt and ground five pepper blend. Flip the patty over when it's nicely brown, after about 2 minutes if your griddles was really hot. Season the flipped side, add the sliced cheese if you want and let cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.
- Toast your buns quickly on the grill at the same time. Add Ketchup and Mustard on each bun's side if desired. Build your burger, stacking the patties and the toppings as you wish.
- Enjoy right away.