Classic Hamburgers

  • Classic Hamburgers

Classic Hamburgers


Photo:  Murray Lloyd
(serves 6)

I ate the most perfect hamburger of my life at Jean Georges, a very upscale, contemporary style French restaurant, on the 4th floor at Three on the Bund in Shanghai. I was overwhelmed by the simplicity of the ingredients when Chef Eric Johnson kindly rattled them off. Trust me, the patties are only minced meat and seasoning. You must visit your butcher to buy the meat ingredients.


olive oil for barbecue

6 JG Hamburger Patties

6 hamburger buns (aim for flattish buns around 8cm diameter, cut in half through the centre)

90g finely shredded Iceberg lettuce (about 1/4 of an Iceberg lettuce)

120g Monterey Jack cheese (or similar; a semisoft cheese with a bland flavour and ability to slowly melt) (thinly sliced and cut into squares to fit the burger patties)

125ml (1/2 cup) Mustard Mayonnaise

Homemade Chips

Zucchini Pickle


· Preheat barbecue flat plate to medium hot. Brush with oil and wipe off any residue.

· Place JG Hamburger Patties directly from refrigerator onto preheated barbecue. Cook for 4-5 minutes on first side, turn over and cook for 2-3 minutes on the second side. Place cheese on the patties and cook for a further 1-2 minutes. Patties should be golden brown on each side, slightly pink in the centre and cheese just beginning to melt.

· To rest patties: Remove from barbecue onto a warmed tray. Rest a sheet of Teflon on patties and tightly cover with a tea towel.

· To assemble Classic Hamburgers: Place 6 hamburger bun bases on a tray (if buns feel a little stale lightly toast buns on either side). Place tops on a second tray. Spread each cut side of buns with 2 teaspoons each of Mustard Mayonnaise.

· Divide lettuce among bun bases.

· Place a hamburger pattie on top of lettuce and close with bun top.

· Serve with freshly made Homemade Chips and accompany with Zucchini Pickle and if you wish mustard and tomato sauce.

JG Hamburger Patties

(makes 6 patties)


310g lean beef brisket (chopped into 4cm dice)

310g beef chuck steak (chopped into 3cm dice)

1 tsp flaky sea salt

155g brisket fat (white & firm) (roughly chopped)

85g rindless smoked bacon (roughly chopped)

1 + 3/4 tsp toasted & freshly ground cumin seeds

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper


· Place brisket and chuck steak into a ceramic dish and sprinkle all over with salt. Leave to sit in refrigerator overnight.

· Set up a mincer with the largest hole (5mm) attachment. (If you do not have a mincer, you may be able to convince your butcher to salt and mince the meat cuts for you. An extremely second-best option would be to mince the meat in batches using the pulse button on food processor.) Feed salted beef, fat and bacon through the mincer.

· Change mincer attachment to the next smallest hole (4mm) and feed minced meat through again. Transfer mince to a large bowl.

· Add cumin seeds and black pepper and mix well.

· Divide mixture evenly into six, roll each portion into a ball and flatten to disc-shape 7.5cm-8cm diameter with 3cm thickness. Neaten sides.

· Cover and refrigerate patties for 1-2 hours, overnight, or for up to two days before cooking.