Chefs have been telling us for years that you shouldn’t smash your burger patties in the frying pan because you’ll squeeze all the juices out. So then why do the chains Shake Shack and Smashburger do just that? Because when you do it right, the results are delicious. J. Kenji López-Alt developed a technique called the Food Lab’s Ultra-Smashed Cheeseburgers that I’m going to try out.
…as Kenji points out in his cookbook opus The Food Lab, if you smash your burger once, decisively, as soon as it hits the hot skillet—while the meat and fat are still cold—there won't be any juices (yet) to lose. You'll maximize the points of contact with the raging hot pan, which is effectively like singeing a layer of caramelization and Maillard reaction goodness onto every last bit of surface area, so it all sears into a salty, beefy crust.
It might take a bit of practice to get it exactly right, but the number of cheeseburgers I have to eat to get there is just the kind of sacrifice I’m willing to make. Check out the recipe at Food52. -via Digg
(Image credit: Mark Weinberg)