Hudson Valley Burgers 2011: How to Make the Perfect Burger, According to Joshua Applestone of Fleischer’s Grass-Fed and Organic Meats, Kingston, NY

We asked Joshua Applestone of Fleisher’s Grass-Fed and Organic Meats in Kingston for tips on how to cook the perfect burger

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ground meat in frying pan

Our Daily Grind

Ground beef, ground meat, hamburger, or as my grandmother used to call it, chop meat, is all one and the same. Grind, as we call it, is a standard 80/20 mix at the shop — that’s an 80 percent meat to 20 percent fat ratio.

Most supermarket grind is far leaner than ours and often labeled with names rather than percentages: ground chuck, ground sirloin, and ground round. Although any cut of beef may be used for grind, the percentages are really what is being implied by these names: chuck is usually the standard 80/20 balance, while sirloin is a bit leaner, and round usually weighs in at 90 percent lean.

» Return to the Hudson Valley’s Best Burgers 2011

» Visit Fleisher’s Grass-Fed and Organic Meats in Kingston, NY
» Visit the Hudson Valley Dining Guide
» Visit the Hudson Valley Food & Drink Guide

By law, the most fat that ground beef can contain if you buy it in a supermarket is 30 percent, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create some brisket-short-rib grind at home that might top the scale at 40 percent fat. Fat is flavor and truly decadent burgers are made with a fatty grind. We personally prefer a 70/30 grind. But remember, the fattier the hamburger is, the harder it is to prevent flare-ups on your grill.

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