Now that it’s warm again, I’ve been getting so excited about grilling things. I live in New York City, so the fact that I’ve got any outdoor space at all is a small miracle and a huge real estate selling point. To fit our teensy backyard, we have a teensy Weber charcoal grill. None of my roommates actually knows where the grill came from–it just appeared on the front porch, and stayed there long enough that we
stole adopted it for our own. Despite its mysterious origins this little grill has served us well, and I’m very excited for it to make its debut on this blog!
But on to the burgers.
Making burgers by hand is not something I grew up doing, but luckily it’s very easy to learn to do. You’ll want to start with a ball of meat that’s somewhere between golf-ball and tennis-ball in size. In your fist, squeeze this ball together tightly so that the meat compacts a bit. Then, smoosh the meat ball into a flatter-pancake shape, using your palms to put some pressure on the edges so the meat stays together. You might need to pinch bits of the outside back together, that’s ok.
Once your ball is flattened, use your fingertips to push an indentation into the middle of the patty, on both sides. Remember looking at images of red blood cells in biology class? Like that. That’s the shape we’re going for, it will help the burger to cook more evenly.
Once you’ve made your patties, you can stack them with squares of parchment or wax paper in between until you are ready to cook them. If they’ll sit for a while, I suggest that you wrap them up and stick them in the fridge until your grill is hot. Before you cook them, do make sure to salt the patties on each side.
I’m still a pretty novice grillmeister, and I’ve just got a tiny grill, so I didn’t use any fancy grilling techniques. If you have a grill with more options, you may experiment with charring the burgers over flames on one side of the grill, then letting them cook, covered, in lower heat on another area of the grill that doesn’t have coals or fire.
I’ve been wanting to feature a recipe with grilled pineapple because it’s the bomb. These “Kona” Burgers are made with a mixture of ground pork and ground beef, and are served atop caramelized onions and a thick slice of grilled pineapple. Grilling the pineapple lends a lot of depth to its bright, sunshine-y flavor. Trust me, you’ll like it.
- 1 lb ground pork
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 pineapple
- 1 onion
- olive oil
- Mix together the ground meats. Form the meat into patties. Salt each side of the patties, and cook until done to your preference on the grill, flipping halfway through.
- Slice the pineapple into 1/2" - 1" thick slices, and slice the onion into 1/2" rings. Brush olive oil over the slices, and lightly salt both the onion and pineapple. Grill the pineapple until it softens, about 10 minutes, flipping over after several minutes. Grill the onion until it blisters and begins to turn golden in the center, flipping to char evenly.
- Serve the burgers with the pineapple and onions.