If you are on the lookout for the best burger, then you should think about watching or joining a burger contest. That way, you can test your burger making skills and also spy on the different techniques other cooks apply when creating them. Different people often put emphasis on different aspects of the burger ensemble or process to make it stand out. Some claim the secret is in the patty while others assert, it’s in how you grill the meat and what you use. In any case, it is essential that you follow the following protocols when it comes to preparing burgers so you do not cause a massive food poisoning outbreak after the competition.
First, see to it that you buy fresh meat. If it’s beef, make sure that the cattle meat was just recently harvested and delivered to the shop. Don’t go for those that have deep red colors because they are most likely to be old stock. Look for those that are pinkish-red in shade and see to it that there are thin threads of fat running through them so you can secure that tasty flavor hamburger patties are known for. It would be best if you befriend butchers so they can reserve for you prime meat products when you buy. And it would be ideal if you have them ground the beef chunk or steak in from of you so you’d be certain about the quality of the meat you use.
Now, if you are buying pre-packed ground beef, see to it that the package you get feels cold and is not leaking. Beware of the pink slime because it is indicative of ammonia hydroxide, a poisonous substance used to treat E. coli and Salmonella on meat products. If you have anything else to buy from the grocery store, work them out first before you visit the meat section. That way, you don’t risk the meat being exposed to pathogens as you circle around aisles.
Second, freeze the ground beef you get as soon as possible. That way, you can preserve its freshness and slow down the growth of bacteria. In addition, freezing also ensures that you are able to preserve the fat content of the meat, which significantly factors in on its taste. Don’t go more than two days without using up the meat you purchase, unless you use heavy duty plastic wraps and foils to keep it from spoiling.
Now, when you are thawing the meat, best keep it in a cool place to prevent the growth of bacteria. Don’t leave it out at room temperature for more than an hour, defrost it through the microwave or have it soften under cold water as these will just promote contamination.
Finally, always wash your hands before you handle the meat directly. And see to it that all the other items you are adding on are properly sanitized and applied. This goes for the toppings and the dressings.
It may not seem like they can contribute a lot to the creation of the best burger. But keeping ground beef pristine and fresh will have a significant effect over the taste your burger patties. Sometimes, the secret to winning a burger contest does not lie on what you add to make the sandwich taste delicious. Often times, it is on how you make its main ingredient remain special that gets you the trophy.