A microwave burger may not strike you as the conventional method of preparation, more so, if you are fond of the grilled versions, or simply making a quick stopover at a fast food joint. But before you dismiss this fast food hack, take a second to acquaint yourself with its advantages, and then form your judgment of the situation. You just might change your mind!
Why I call it a fast food hack is because it takes well under 10 min to have a plate ready, even less if you are preparing it for a smaller group. Now that summer is approaching, it only makes sense to try out new exciting recipes and with that, fresh cooking designs. I mean if it’s better, why not? Considering the possibility of saving a couple of dollars off this witty invention, I say take the plunge! Not to mention all the yummy toppings you could experiment with.
Okay, enough blabbering, let’s get into the details.
The Preparation Phase
You need your ingredients and cooking equipments set beforehand. These are some of the basics you will require;
- Ground beef/turkey/ pork
- A medium-sized glass bowl
- A patty press
- Wax paper rounds (optional)
Whatever beef you buy make sure it is not entirely the lean kind. When it comes to burgers, fatty meat is your friend because this component generates vital moisture and juiciness. About an 80-20 ratio should be good enough. Also, if you can, mix up a variety of meats proportionally, it goes a long way in boosting the flavor.
So now that you have your ground beef, toss it into your bowl and begin to knead. Don’t be afraid to get dirty because this step is best done using your hands. Add in some salt and pepper to your preference and keep working the meat. Feel free to throw in more seasonings but do not overdo it. It ends up overwhelming the original savor.
Next, begin to form the meat into a ball form, and press it down between your palms. This is where a patty press becomes very handy, especially if you are preparing in bulk. Chances of creating thick, inconsistent patties are very high, which in the end, could result in undercooked meat. So instead of messing up the whole recipe, a patty tool is more reliable. In conjunction with a wax paper round, you are better placed to achieve fairly circular patties.
When rolling the beef into rolls, avoid packing it too tight. It is better to loosely press it together in a manner only strong enough to maintain its shape. Otherwise, too much tension will result in dense, hard to chew meat.
RELATED READ: How To Cook Frozen Pizza In Microwave
How to Cook your Burger
Once your patties are assembled, transfer the pieces onto a microwave-safe dish with a paper towel beneath. At this point, you can drizzle some favorite sauces ie: (barbeque, Worcestershire) dried garlic, anything you would like to have cooked with the patties. A simple trick that cooking pros suggest is pressing your thumb in the middle of the beef to prevent the buggers from swelling up too much.
Next, pop your plate into the microwave and set a timer. An average of 2 minutes could get the job done but this will ultimately depend on your machine’s wattage. I would start with one and a half minutes then follow up with preferably a 30 seconds increment. Flip the burger to the other side and repeat the process. You should know that older visions may take longer cooking periods so don’t be in a rush until you have verified that the patties are ready.
How best can you do this? Investing in a digital meat thermometer is one way to go about it. Typically, properly cooked ground beef should read above 160 F degrees, if you used turkey in its place do not settle for anything under 165 F degrees.
For accurate results, gently insert the temperature tool in the thickest part of the meat (usually the center) and ensure that it doesn’t poke out on the other side. With meats like ground pork and turkey, it is not unusual to still see some redness even when thoroughly cooked. So rather than banking on internal color change to gauge readiness, a more sure bet would be a meat thermometer.
What Can I use for My Toppings?
Nothing is set in stone when it comes to burger toppings. You can literally mix in everything and anything you like as long as you use tasty ingredients. Whether French, Canadian, or Italian inspired toppings, what truly matters is how it all comes together in your mouth.
One local must-have though is the cheese. Because honestly, what is a burger without cheese? Whether you like it layered up or in proportional amounts, this is that one addition that makes all the difference!
To make sure you get the cheesiest bites, place your slices on the beef just after removing your plate from the microwave, as opposed to having them inside. The heat retained by the meat will melt it into the right consistency. It’s never a good idea to directly burn the cheese because it gets messy, both in the microwave and on your plate. You might hardly enjoy your snack because of all the unnecessary drizzling.
On the side, you could have onions fried in soy sauce, some mustard, mayonnaise, bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, or pickles if you like. Basically, let your creative juices flow! Just before you can crown your burger, how about toasting the buns? Let the halves roast until a golden brown color appears, the end result gives a crisp touch to the already mouth-watering sensation.
Assemble all the parts and there you have it! A microwave burger delight, easy and fast to make. I’m sure your family and friends won’t mind it too.
Long gone are the days when we were stuck up on a singular way of doing things. In this day and age, new innovations are cropping up and replacing old rigid systems. The microwave burger, being a practical example of this reality, may not sound like your go-to-option. But how will you know if you never try? Now that you have the recipe, there’s no reason not to.