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Old 04-29-2005, 08:01 AM   #11
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I have heard of doing this, but have never tried since I have never had the need. I bet it would be great though. I have also heard of putting a small piece of ice in the middle. I think Paula Dean does this. I have not tried it so I can't speak from experience, but it sounds silly to me. She claims it keeps the meat moist, but I don't want watery meat. I want juicy meat. There is a difference. Butter sounds like it would work very well though, but butter makes everything better (just like garlic )

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Old 04-29-2005, 08:12 AM   #12
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i use 93% meat all the time, for burgers and meatballs. been trying to reduce fat in my diet. otter is right; it will be dry, unless you compensate for it. the butter sounds good, but defeats the purpose of using lower fat meat. i've heard of putting an ice chip in the center of a burger, to keep it moist and rare, but i have never tried that.

i had the same problems with burgers falling apart, especially the edges shredding, so if ya wanna use 93% beef, you'll have to really press the burgers and form the edges well. unfortunately, it will make it a little tougher by pressing it so much.
you could add an egg white, and maybe a little breadcrumbs to help it stay together, but then it's a mini meatloaf, not a burger.

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Old 04-29-2005, 01:31 PM   #13
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Another thing you can do to aid in juiciness is to add a piece of bread that's been soaked in milk to your meat/seasoning mix before shaping into patties.

Also, leave them dudes alone after you start cooking them. Pressing down with your flipper to get more brown-ness (technical term) will squeeze all that good juice right on out. Gently lift up the edge of one with your flipper to see how it's doing, then turn it over ONCE and cook for about the same time as you did the first side.
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Old 04-29-2005, 01:48 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by mudbug
Also, leave them dudes alone after you start cooking them. Pressing down with your flipper to get more brown-ness (technical term) will squeeze all that good juice right on out. Gently lift up the edge of one with your flipper to see how it's doing, then turn it over ONCE and cook for about the same time as you did the first side.
This is such great advice that it needs to be stated again! This is possibly one of the biggest mistakes by amateur in the kitchen (or at the grill). The sizzle noise it makes when you smash them is so satisfying, but it is the sound of all the juices jumping ship. I know I used to do it all the time before I learned otherwise. Just a few moths ago I watched my MIL do it and my wife saw me wincing behind her back. She later explained to her mom why she might want to try not doing that
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Old 04-29-2005, 10:33 PM   #15
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Tried and true method for keeping lean burger moist; Seperate 1 egg per pound of lean ground beef. Add two tbs. Worcestershire Sauce, Magii, or whatever your favorite sauce is, to the egg-white. Whisk together. Add it to the pound of ground meat. This will add moistureand flavor.

The burgers seem dry becasue fat has a greater viscosity than does water. In other words, it takes more water to make the mouth feel wet. Adding the egg adds body, holds in moisture, reduces or eliminates shrinkage, does not affect the burger flavor, and holds all the pieces together, just as the missing fat would have done.

Also, make your patties no thicker than an average man's little finger. Make the center a little thinner as the meat always swells when cooked. This will insure even cooking throughout.

I know this technique works. I have a few freinds, a SOL, and my youngest daughter's won over. The boyfreind is trying to convince his uncles (who reportedly destry hamburgers on a regular basis) to try it. He says to me that his uncle's burgers are nearly inedible. He loves coming to my house to eat. And my daughter is more than willing to invite him .

Hope this helps.

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Old 04-30-2005, 09:19 AM   #16
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Many years ago worked in supermarkets. Every once in a while the butcher would take some meat pieces out the ground beef bin, grind them, and cook them as hamburgers on the hot plate they would seal the plastic wrap that surrounds meat on.

They were ambrosia and served on a Kaiser roll needed no condiments at all.

Took me many years to realize why they were so good.

The reason was they were freshly ground and treated gently, not pounded or smashed down as the meat in the grocery case.

Now we always grind our own chopped meat for burgers.

Have many grinders, but usually use the food processor. You have to be careful when using the beast because you don't want the meat processed too fine.

And then treat the stuff gently, don't squash it.

Usually use chuck but I know many prefer sirloin.

Kinda adjust the amount of fat by eye. Can't tell you the percentage. But we do not make it very lean or exceptionally fatty.

There is nothing better than a just ground burger.
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Old 05-01-2005, 10:03 AM   #17
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Cheeseburger in Paradise

When it comes to burgers, less is more. I use fresh ground chuck (about 3 burgers per lb), and don't add a thing to it. If I'm frying in my electric skillet, I sprinkle the surface with salt, lay in the burgers, sprinkle them with S&P, and fry at 375 without turning until brown on bottom. Then I flip, S&P the other side, turn heat down to 350 and cover skillet. When bottoms are brown, press burgers lightly with spatula...if juice comes out clear, rather than pink, they are done. Overcooking makes them dry and tough.
We follow the same method on the outdoor grill.
We recently got a new George Foreman grill, and we tried burgers on it last week and were very pleased with the results. Browning both sides at once seals in the juices very nicely, and all the fat runs off into a little tray.
I like mine with a slice of Velveeta Lite melted on top, mustard and sweet pickle relish. A slice of garden fresh tomato on top makes it heavenly!
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Old 05-01-2005, 10:44 PM   #18
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I use 90% chuck, myself. The main "trick" if you will is simply to not overcook them! I've never had much of a problem with dry burgers. The frozen butter pat in the middle sounds like a fine notion- water won't make a burger "juicier," only fat will.

I won't try to convert anyone to my high fat & protein, low carb way of eating, but I'd put my triglycerides vs HDL against any of you low fat guys!
If we're not supposed to eat animals, then how come they're made out of meat?
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Old 05-02-2005, 06:23 PM   #19
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What about mixing a little olive oil in meat you get the good fat that way, when I pan fry bison burgers I use a fair bit of oil in the an and it gets absorbed into the patties making them moist.
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Old 05-03-2005, 01:48 PM   #20
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Interesting... I have a problem with my ground chuck falling apart too... I use the KitchenAid attachment and only chuck... it's hopefully 20% fat.. and sometimes I get some additional fat from the butcher to add... the taste is great but on a charcoal grill, they sometimes partially fall apart.

So, I found this thread interesting... But... as coincidence would have it... I had the FoodTV channel on and was watching Paula Deen prepare and cook some hamburgers (in a cast iron pan) that she claimed were VERY lean... ground round she said.

Anyway.. she added 1/2 cup water to her meat... claimed it made them more juicy and less likely to fall apart...

Here's the recipe if anyone is interested:

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, 80 percent lean
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup cold water
1 onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick
4 eggs
4 hamburger buns
4 slices American cheese

In a large bowl, season the ground beef with salt and pepper. Add 1/2 cup cold water and mix by hand until meat has absorbed all the water (the water keeps the burgers moist and juicy). Shape into 4 patties. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Spray the skillet with non-stick cooking spray. Add the burgers and cook to desired temperature, about 8 to 10 minutes per side for medium-well. Remove the burgers from the pan and set aside. Add the onions slices to the same skillet and cook until golden brown on both sides, being careful to keep them in whole slices. It should take about 3 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Crack the eggs into the same skillet and cook until the yolk is not runny. Carefully remove from the pan. Lay the bottom of 4 hamburger buns on a flat surface. Top each bun with a burger. Top the burgers with 1 egg, onion slice, 1 slice of cheese and then the top bun. Lightly press the sandwiches together with your hand. Place the sandwiches into the pan and cook for 1 minute on each side to griddle the buns. Serve with French fries and pickles.

I frequently add an egg to my burgers.. but I'm going to give the water a try next time and see what happens.

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