Contrary to popular belief, a hamburger doesn’t require fillers and binders, like eggs, bread crumbs and seasonings. Great quality beef needs little enhancement. The 10 minutes it takes to cook is enough time to open a bagged salad, slice the buns and assemble toppings – and pulse together a quick mango sorbet for dessert.
1 1/2 lbs. (750 g) ground chuck or lean ground beef
salt and freshly ground black pepper
condiments of your choice (sliced tomato, onion, torn lettuce, sliced avocado, pickles, cooked bacon, ketchup, mustard, mayo)
1 600 g bag frozen mango cubes, slightly softened
1/3 cup (85 ml) icing sugar
Milk or coconut milk (optional)
Simple syrup (optional)
Lime juice (optional)
Set a large, heavy cast iron skillet over medium-high heat or preheat your grill to medium high.
Gently shape ground beef into patties, making them evenly thick yet slightly concave in the middle. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook in the skillet or on the grill for 4–5 minutes per side, covering with a lid (or cookie sheet, if you don’t have a lid) to speed things up. You’ll know they’re done when the juices run clear and the internal temperature reads 160˚F (71˚C).
Place a slice of cheese on each burger and cover for a minute, until it melts.
While the burgers cook, pulse the slightly thawed mango and icing sugar in the food processor until it’s as smooth as you can get it. Add a splash of milk, water or lime juice if it needs some liquid to help it along. (This will depend on how powerful your food processor is.) Scoop into a bowl or plastic container and put in the freezer while you eat dinner.
Serve your burgers on soft buns with whatever toppings you like, and a tossed green salad. The mango sorbet is the perfect light finish to the meal.
- Handle the meat gently.
- Go for lean or regular ground chuck – a little fat will keep it juicy.
- Try inside-out cheeseburgers by wrapping the meat around an unwrapped Babybel cheese and shaping it into a patty – the cheese will melt as the burger cooks and ooze out when you bite into it.
Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, June/July 2014.