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  #16   ^
Old Mon, Nov-20-23, 08:22
Calianna's Avatar
Calianna Calianna is offline
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Posts: 1,643
Plan: Atkins-ish (hypoglycemia)
Stats: 000/000/000 Female 63
Progress: 50%

The new trend reviving the nation’s hunger for meat are burgers – “smashed burgers”.

The beef boom is being turbocharged by patties which are flattened on the grill with the back of a spatula searing the meat and creating crispy edges, while locking in the juices.

Many restaurants such as Supernova, Bleecker Burger, Black Bear Burger and Beefy Boys have developed cult-like followings and won praise from industry-leading chefs.

All of which has made the trendy burger style near ubiquitous in towns and cities up and down the country.

This is interesting to read, because I wonder if they're 100% meat burgers or not.

I say this because DD1 lives in England, and tells me that everyone she knows adds bread crumbs to their burgers. (or was it flour? Something decidedly NOT meat though)

A couple of years ago, she made burgers for friends and they were absolutely astounded by how incredibly good they were compared to any other burgers they'd ever had. She explained that she doesn't add any bread crumbs to her burgers, that's why they're so good.

She just fries her all-meat burgers in a skillet on the stove, and the cooking equipment in her flat leaves a lot to be desired, so I doubt the stove is getting hot enough to truly sear the edges of the burgers as described in the article for making smashed burgers.

I never did find out why everyone she knew added breadcrumbs all the time - my guess is that it was an economizing measure passed down from their mothers (and grandmothers), so that the expensive meat would go further to feed the family. But I can certainly understand why the burgers would end up being like a meatloaf texture and taste, which to me was always lacking in flavor.

So I wonder if the restaurants that are making the smashed burgers are using 100% meat, or if they also add bread crumbs to them, and it's just the smashing process that makes them better than the average UK burger?

(We visited in 2019 and ate at a Five Guys once while there - their burgers are 100% meat just like in the US. But that was the only burger I ate while there. Their sausages though - I could taste the flour/bread crumbs in those - very disappointing, because they tasted like pork based meatloaf.)
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  #17   ^
Old Mon, Nov-20-23, 16:16
deirdra's Avatar
deirdra deirdra is offline
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Posts: 4,300
Plan: vLC/GF,CF,SF
Stats: 197/136/150 Female 66 inches
Progress: 130%
Location: Alberta

This is the first I've heard of "Smash Burgers"; they are what I've been calling "burgers" since I learned to cook them in the 1960s on a pre-heated skillet or grill. I assumed everyone flattened them with a spatula (or pushed down on the top of their George Forman Grill) to get them thinner & crispier & seal in the juices. Though I guess most people these days are used to greyish steamed(?) from frozen "burgers" from fast food joints.

Back in the olden days we learned to pre-heat the oven or skillet or grill. We weren't told why, nor the name for it, but in fact that is what causes the Maillard reaction, a chemical reaction that occurs between amino acids and reducing sugars, producing s a mixture of complex compounds that make foods smell and taste yummier. French physician & chemist Louis Camille Maillard first described it in 1912.

Calianna, I agree with UK burgers being more like meatloaf pucks; it is probably a WWII holdover from the need to stretch food. I'd prefer a smaller 100% meat burger with the rest on the side. Even with your DD1's limited utensils, pre-heating the skillet may help.

Last edited by deirdra : Mon, Nov-20-23 at 16:37.
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  #18   ^
Old Tue, Nov-21-23, 03:43
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
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Posts: 14,380
Plan: EpiPaleo/Primal/LowOx
Stats: 220/125/150 Female 67
Progress: 136%
Location: USA

Originally Posted by Calianna
I say this because DD1 lives in England, and tells me that everyone she knows adds bread crumbs to their burgers. (or was it flour? Something decidedly NOT meat though)

I have never liked meatloaf, and always smash my burgers It's the way DH likes them.

But a great deal of the excess carbs in my diet growing up was hamburger helper, tuna casserole, and hot dogs. But meat was never missing. Now, brisket is cheaper by the pound and the long cooking time is a better way of economizing.

I keep thinking of the Victorian-era study done on the diets of the poor, and they were full of meat. Recipes for lesser cuts, like lungs and entrails, predominated, but they still ate a lot of meat.

Or, as my grandmother liked to say, "Meat gives you strength." Since there aren't any vegan civilizations on record. In fact, societies with low meat intake are often "warlike" because they would fight for more sustenance, raiding other groups.

This is part of the anthropology I studied in school. And no, it hasn't been that long ago I know of no "vegan studies" which contradicts decades of what is still settled science.
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  #19   ^
Old Tue, Nov-21-23, 09:53
Bob-a-rama's Avatar
Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Posts: 1,913
Plan: Keto (Atkins Induction)
Stats: 235/175/185 Male 5' 11"
Progress: 120%
Location: Florida

I try to stick to 'real' foods as much as possible.

IMO, Real meat, especially 100% grass-fed has got to be better than the highly processed fake meat.

IMO, Real cheese has got to be better than fake cheese

My vegan friend, said long ago. when she went vegan, she would buy the "boca burgers" and others as a transition food, but after a while she gave them up.

She doesn't preach vegan, we can go to restaurants that serve both, and so I never asked her why she went that way.

Her husband is a "vegetarian" - eggs and dairy - but doesn't call himself a vegetarian.

She has cats, knows they are obligate carnivores and feeds them meat.

I think most of us are just picky eaters for one reason or another.

I think the fake meat is worse for the climate than real meat, so I'm not sorry to see them go.
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