We've always been real sticklers for the manner in which we build our burgers. We change up the ingredients going into the patty quite often, but today we're talking about the physical order in which the ingredients are layered. By stacking your burger in a certain manner, you can actually help tame the rogue condiments and escaping vegetables (we're looking at you tomato) and enhance the flavor of your burger!
We've been told 100 times over (and then some) that all of this is nonsense, just throw some meat and veg on a bun and dive in! But for us, there are certain tastes on a burger that when in combination with each other enhance their flavors, plus there are some things that just get messy when placed next to each other.
To start, we'd like to say that deep down, we're burger purists. We like a toasty bun, perfectly cooked farm fresh meat and if we're feeling saucy some bacon or jalapeno with a little mayo. But, we know that many of you prefer a burger with a bit more color and design and structure to it.
Here's how we go about it:
We begin with the bottom bun (obviously!) which we prefer toasted slightly. It will help hold your condiments in the bread and not on your shirts. This would stand to reason that condiments come next, but only your ketchup and mustard. Mayo has a more delicate texture and can get lost down below, plus it can help anchor your veggies up top!
Next up is pickles. They go under the meat so their strong crisp flavor doesn't overpower your tomato that gets added later. Add your meat and your cheese (which is hopefully melted) and then your tomato. If your cheese is melty enough it should hold the tomato still. Add your lettuce (it acts like a blanket and keeps the tomato in place) and then your onion and mayo. We prefer red onion for taste and color both. Top it off with your toasted top bun and you're all set.
If we use bacon we place it on the meat, but under the cheese. It keeps it in place and allows the taste of the two meats to mingle. Plus, it's nice to have the cheese hang onto things so you don't take one bite and end up with an entire strip of bacon that's pulled out of the assembly.
It seems like a great deal of information, but once you start assembling, it will go together in a snap! Do you like your burger layered a different way? Let us know how and why in the comments below!
Related: Recipe: Old-Fashioned Juicy Burgers
(Image: Alaina B. licensed for use under Creative Commons and Sarahrae)