American chains like Five Guys and Shake Shack are thriving, while some of the UK's most distinguished chefs have elevated the dish to gourmet status.
Personally, I wasn't a big fan of burgers until I had to think about one for our downstairs casual dining menu at The Hengist Restaurant. It had to have a big flavour hit to make the grade. In the recipe I use miso paste, a Japanese seasoning based on fermented soya which is widely available in supermarkets. It's known for its intense umami taste.
Apart from flavour, what makes the perfect gourmet burger? For me, it's about using high quality, well-seasoned mince and not overworking it. Hand forming is best. Crunchy lettuce adds texture, and everything should be held together in a gently toasted brioche burger bun. You can dress it up with your own favourite relish. I use an egg: with your first bite, the yolk oozes out and act as a rich sauce. I also add deep fried gherkins on the side and triple cooked chips, of course, just to round it off.
A gourmet beef burger
5 [small]from[/small] 1 [small]vote[/small] Recipe by Petrus Madutlela
Course: Lunch, DinnerCuisine: GlobalDifficulty: Moderate
Here is my take on a gourmet beef burger for you to enjoy.
250 g beef mince
250 g pork mince
30 g miso paste
20 g ground mace
80 ml dark soya sauce
2 tbsp. chopped tarragon
2 tbsp. chopped parsley
Seasoning to taste
2 tbsp. olive oil (for cooking)To serve
4 brioche buns, gently toasted
4 hen's eggs, fried
1 tbsp Toasted pine nuts, pumpkin seeds or sesame seeds
Finely sliced cos lettuce leaves
Finely sliced cucumber
Put the burger ingredients in a large bowl and mix well to combine.Divide the mixture into 4, roll into balls and then flatten into burger discs.Transfer to a flat tray. Wrap with cling film and pop in the fridge for at least a couple of hours.Braai, griddle or fry the burgers over a medium heat for 5 – 6 minutes each side.Place the burgers in the buns, top with chopped lettuce and cucumber, a sprinkle of toasted seeds and finish with the egg.
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