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Cheeseburger from 'The Menu'
This is all pretty straightforward stuff. I got everything from a grocery store. The bun was from the bakery section. The cheese was from the deli (though it was a little thick on the slice — more on that later). And the beef was a local grass-fed beef with an 85/15 lean/fat ratio. It’s as close to the “restaurant-raised” Hawthone-fied version as I was going to get.

Luckily, there’s a clear mise en place set up for the burger-making scene. You can see four small bowls for onions, pickles, and yellow mustard. It looks like the other mini bowl has mayo so I just went with that. I got all of that from the store too. Remember, we’re talking about simple things elevated here.

Servings: 1

Servings: 1
  • 6 oz. grass-fed ground beef
  • 4 slices American cheese (from a deli counter)
  • 1 toasted sesame seed bun (from a bakery)
  • Pickle chips
  • ¼ of a white onion (thinly sliced on a mandoline)
  • Mustard
  • Mayo
  • Kosher salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Neutral vegetable oil
  1. subheading: Prep:
  2. Form two 3-ounce balls with the ground beef, ensuring not to compress the ground beef too much.
  3. Slice the bun.
  4. Slice the white onion on the vertical pole of the onion on the mandoline’s thinnest setting.
  5. Ready the pickles, mustard, mayo, cheese slices, salt, and pepper on a board. This is your mise en place and will allow you to cook and build with ease.
  6. subheading: Cook:
  7. Heat a skillet or grill top on high heat. Once heated, add a small amount of oil - it should just start to spit thin lines of smoke but not billow.
  8. Toast the sesame seed bun on the grill or skillet. Set aside.
  9. Place the balls on the hot surface and smash - using a heavy-duty offset spatula and a kitchen towel - until they’re about ⅓ to ½ inch thick.
  10. Add a large pinch of Kosher salt to each patty and then hit with a good crank of black pepper as well.
  11. Add a few slices of white onion to each patty, creating a thin layer.
  12. After about a minute or so, a good Malliard crust should have formed on the whole bottom of each patty (not just the edges), use the offset spatula to flip the patties. Make sure to keep the onions under the flipped patty.
  13. Immediately add two slices of American cheese to each patty, allowing the corners to drape over the round edges of the meat.
  14. Dope the heel and crown of the bun with the mayo and mustard - a small smear of each on each piece will do - and then add enough thin slices of pickle to the heel to make one layer.
  15. After about two minutes or so, the cheese should be getting melty and searing around the edges. Use the spatula to stack the two patties and place them on the doped heel bun.
  16. Add the crown bun and gently press down, allowing the juices to seep out and help create a deeper sauce for the whole cheeseburger (just as Chef does in The Menu).
  17. Serve - optionally with crinkle-cut fries.

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