I love a good burger.  Unfortunately, it’s tough to label a single way or method as “the best” way to make a burger.  And I’m not going to claim my burger is The one and only best.  I will however, claim that my burger is a damn good one.  I’m going to cook my burger in a sauté pan, on the stove top, but frankly the exact same techniques would apply for the grill; which I love to use also.  In watching and talking to people, I’ve noticed that cooking a great burger is as much about what you don’t do, as it is what you do.  Below, and in the recipe video, I’ll talk about those things, and get you cooking a juicy, delicious, and perfectly cooked burger.  Additionally, I show you how to make some steak fries…because what goes better with a burger than golden brown, crispy fries.  Hope you enjoy them!!

Recipe Overview and Keys to Success

To make the best Burger and fries make sure you pay attention to the following:

  1. There are a few things you need to know about cooking fries, which rather than re-hashing here, I’m refer to you my Steak Fry Recipe to read. 
  2. I really like to use ground beef with 20% fat; that fat provides both flavor and moisture.
  3. Make sure to season the meat with salt and pepper prior to cooking
  4. For a more tender burger, don’t work the meat too much; the more you mash it together the firmer it will be, which is fine if it's your preference
  5. You only need to flip the burger once.  Lay it down on a hot pan/grill and let it sear.  After a few minutes (depending on thickness) flip it and repeat.  That’s it.  You’ll get a nice, evenly cooked burger this way; which you may ruin with multiple flips.
  6. Finally, for a juicier burger, don’t press down while cooking.  That runs the juice right out, and dries out the burger.  You want a dry burger….press away.

RECIPE FOR BURGER AND STEAK FRIES

Ingredients for Burger and Steak Fries (for 2)

  • 2 russet potatoes
  • 1/2 gallon of oil for frying (I generally use vegetable oil, but others (not olive oil) work well too)
  • Salt for seasoning the fries
  • 3/4 lbs of ground beef
  • A couple slices of your favorite cheese
  • Hamburger buns

Making The Burger and Steak Fries

  • First you’ll want to start making the fries
  • Julienne the two potatoes into matchsticks that are about 1 inch each side
  • Put the cut potatoes into a bowl of cold water, and let them soak for at least 15 minutes; but you can do this ahead and allow them to sit for a few hours.  Change the water a couple times
  • Heat the oil in your pot (filling no more than halt way up the side) to about 325 degrees
  • Carefully and thoroughly, drain and dry off the potatoes
  • Lay them into the hot oil, and stir gently to prevent sticking
  • Allow the potatoes to cook for 7 – 9 minutes.  You’re not looking for the outside to brown, but rather the potato to get cooked, and become tender.
  • Use a knife to begin testing tenderness at the 5 to 6 minute mark, and when tender remove to paper towels to drain.  Note you can also do this step up to an hour ahead of time
  • Take the ground beef out of the fridge, and season with salt and pepper
  • Make the patties, and allow them to sit out for about 20 minutes to come up to room temperature
  • When you’re ready to cook, put a sauté pan on the heat, and bring the oil up to 425 degrees
  • One hot, lay the burgers down in the pan to sear on the one side
  • Drop the steak fries into the oil, stirring every couple minutes to prevent sticking
  • After 4 – 5 minutes, flip the burger to cook on the other side
  • After a couple minutes, lay the cheese down on the burger, and place an bowl on top of the pan to create a “oven” that will melt the cheese.  Cook another couple minutes or until the desired doneness
  • Remove the fries from the hot oil once they are golden brown and crispy; season them immediately with salt
  • Remove the burger once cooked, and allow to rest for 1 – 2 minutes
  • Serve up the burger on a nice toasted bun along with the steak fries and your favorite garnishes

Wine Recommendation:  Of course, a beer is always great with a cheese burger and fries, but I do usually turn to wine.  I like both Pinot Noir’s and Zinfandels will burgers depending on the toppings….and stay away from anything too tannic.