The Fourth of July. It is most assuredly our Nation’s favorite day to fire up the grill and celebrate freedom in the company of friends, family, and most importantly delicious food. While most holidays are companions to specific meals or dishes that make the festivities complete, the summertime food on 4th of July holds extra nostalgia due to the true patriotism and Americanism that it so clearly exudes.
At it’s core, 4th of July is a day to celebrate our country, our culture, our freedom…and, at least in our eyes at PRB, our food! No other large-scale holiday exists in which Americans are the only ones who indulge. And after donning your red, white, and blue, stuffing your face with some of East Nashville’s spiciest chicken, and watching colorful showers of fire explode into the night sky, what could be the only thing missing from your Independence Day? Hot dogs, cupcakes, watermelon, and of course our country’s favorite mealtime sweetheart, the hamburger. How much more American can you get?
Back in the 50’s, The United States became widely recognized for the popularization of blue jeans, and today our country is associated worldwide with the widely worn denim pant. Quite similarly, hot dogs and hamburgers have made their mark around the world as America’s food: filling, unhealthy, fast, and easy. Come to think of it, they’re kind of like a reflection of our nation as a whole.
But the truth of the matter is that there is an art to making a real delicious and juicy burger that screams “This is America!” You see, the difference in a well made American hamburger from a haphazard cooked beef patty that you might find at the airport in Nova Scotia is this: quality care from start to finish.
A good “This Is America” burger can’t just be thrown onto the grill straight out of it’s styrofoam tray.
A good “This Is America” burger shouldn’t be something you bought on Red Tag Special.
A good “This is America” burger supports the local farmer, uses the beef from a happy cow, and sends direct benefits to our local economy.
A good “This is America” burger is pattied by hand and seasoned with fresh salt and pepper.
A good “This is America” burger is cooked on the grill, served hot and juicy, is accented with delicious extras and condiments, and is enjoyed by all [who eat meat].
A good “This Is America” burger comes from Porter Road Butcher. But fortunately it can be made from the comfort of your own home.
Porter Road Butcher’s America Burger
8 oz. ground beef from Porter Road Butcher
Freshly ground Salt and Pepper
Bobby John Henry burger bun
Kenny’s Farmhouse white cheddar cheese
PRB Yellow Mustard
- Light your grill. Duh.
- Wash hands thoroughly. Nobody wants your nasty grill-hand germs on their America Burger.
- Working fairly quickly, begin to form 8 oz. of ground beef into a ball in between the palms of your hands. Once shaped into a ball, use your thumbs to begin flatten the ball into a disk, supporting it from underneath with your other fingers and turning the patty in your hands so that it flattens evenly. Using the “L” shape of your index and thumb fingers, press around the edges to seal off the outside of the burger and eliminate any cracks; then flatten once more. Your burger should have a crack-less “seal” on the outside from where your hands pressed and should be about 1/2 an inch thick. Note: do not overwork your burger. Once you form the patty, let it go–even if you think it’s not completely packed on the inside.
- Transfer burger to a clean plate or cutting board and season liberally with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Check to see if your grill is the right temperature by holding your hand about a foot above the grill; if you can keep your hand there for 2 seconds, the grill is ready. If it’s too hot either allow the coals to burn down a little bit or put the top back on the grill to smother it.
- Once your grill has reached the right temperature, place burger on grill directly over coals or flame. The juices from the burger may cause flame flare-ups, which is okay. Just make sure the burger isn’t constantly enveloped in flame–it will burn. For a medium-rare burger, cook for 4 minutes per side; for medium, cook for 5 minutes per side.
- While your burger is grilling, place bun sliced side down on grill over indirect heat to allow it to toast, just 1-2 minutes.
- After 4 or 5 minutes, depending on your preferences, carefully flip your burger.
- Cook second side for the same amount of time and then check for doneness by pressing the center of the burger with your index finger; it should have a little bit of spring when your finger is released. If it seems too soft and doesn’t spring, it’s likely not quite done; the firmer the burger becomes, the more well done it will be.
- Once desired temperature is reached, remove burger from grill and cover with a slice of Kenny’s Farmhouse white cheddar cheese. Once the cheese has melted, the juices in your burger will have had enough time to redistribute and that puppy is ready for a bun: a perfectly toasty Bobby John Henry bun, that is.
- Last step? Adding condiments. We would highly recommend our Porter Road Butcher brand classic ketchup and yellow mustard, butter lettuce from Green Door Gourmet, and perhaps a few slices of our delicious n’ smokey bacon…but that’s just us.