Archive for August 19th, 2011

The mustard seeds in these hearty, pungent burgers are soaked in balsamic vinegar, which softens their skins, giving them a resiliency that makes them pop between the teeth with every bite. The horseradish in the mixture underscores the mustard flavor, and the concentrated sugars in the balsamic vinegar naturally counter the slightly bitter aftertaste of the mustard seed.

Prep: 5 minutes
Grill: 7 minutes

– Long-handled spatula

– Because these burgers are pungent, it is best to keep your garnishes fresh: a slice of ripe beefsteak tomato, a round of sweet onion, a leaf of romaine lettuce, a dollop of coleslaw, or a few slices of dill pickle.
– If you want to add cheese, make it something assertive that goes well with mustard: an imported Swiss, a slice of aged Cheddar, or a smear of German Muenster.

Gas: Direct heat, medium-high (430° to 450°F)
Clean, oiled grate
Direct heat, light ash
12-by-12-inch charcoal bed (about 3 dozen coals)
Clean, oiled grate on lowest setting
Direct heat, light ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 to 4 inches deep
Clean, oiled grate set 2 inches above the fire

2 teaspoons mustard seeds
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 pounds ground beef chuck, 85% lean
2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
2 teaspoons jarred horseradish
½ teaspoon kosher salt
Oil for coating grill grate
6 hamburger buns, split

1. Heat the grill as directed.
2. Combine the mustard seeds and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside to soak for about 10 minutes.
3. Using your hands, mix the beef, soaked mustard seeds, mustard, horseradish, and salt in a bowl until well blended; do not overmix. Using a light touch, form into 6 patties no more than 1 inch thick. Refrigerate the burgers until the grill is ready.
4. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the burgers on the grill, cover, and cook for 7 minutes, flipping after about 4 minutes, for medium-done (150°F, slightly pink). Add a minute per side for well-done (160°F).
5. To toast the buns, put them cut-sides down directly over the fire for the last minute of cooking.
6. If serving the burgers directly from the grill, serve on the buns. If the burgers will sit, even for a few minutes, keep the buns and burgers separate until just before eating.

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