Making your own Burgers
When I first started to become interested in BBQ, one of the first things I tried was making my own burgers. This was simply using some steak mince bought from the butchers and forming it into patties by hand.
I got a meat grinder / sausage stuffer attachment for my Kenwood Food Mixer one Christmas and since then I have enjoyed creating different blends of meat to use in burgers.
I have tried a few different blends but there is one that I keep coming back to as my favourite. The bulk of the mix is made up of a good quality beef chuck. The chuck is a highly marbled bit of meat that would otherwise require the low and slow treatment… however when it is ground – it has the perfect balance of meat to fat.
The minimum fat ratio you should use is 80/20 – meaning the final mixture should be approximately 80% meat and 20% fat. Fat is what keeps a burger incredibly moist and also adds a lot of flavour.
I like to keep my ratio closer to 70/30 so I add in another secret ingredient streaky bacon. Yep – as always, bacon takes these burgers to the next level. The added bacon fat brings the ratio closer to the 70/30 split I like plus that little bit of pork is nice mixed through the beef.
As a seasoning, my favourite at the time of writing this is the Montreal Streak Seasoning by Angus & Oink. It has a great flavour profile to go with these steak burgers.
So here are the measurements I would use for 2 pounds of burger mixture are as follows:
1 lb 10 oz Beef Chuck (including any fat cap)
6 oz Streaky bacon
2 heaped tablespoons of Angus & Oink Montreal Steak Seasoning
I prefer to use the medium plate for making burgers. I don’t tend to use a binder but if you are having trouble getting your burgers to hold together, you could add a dash of Worcestershire sauce to the mix just to wet it a little.
Check out these 3 grinders to get you started
3 Tips for grinding your own meat
Keep all your equipment and meat extremely coldWhen your meat gets warm, the fats become soft and sticky. This makes it very hard for the grinder to handle and it will start to stick in the mesh. Place all your grinding attachments in the freezer for 20-30 minutes before you start. You can also place your meat in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to ensure it is extremely cold.
Add your seasoning before you grind the meat
After you cube your meat, add any seasonings you want in your final mix before running it through the grinder. This will avoid having to handle the meat afterwards plus it will incorporate the seasonings evenly throughout the mixture.
- Keep your attachments clean
I guess this goes without saying but there are a lot of different parts to your grinding attachments so ensure you clean them thoroughly each time you use them. You can place all the attachments in a large stock pot and boil them to make sure they are sterile.