Cheeseburgers for a summer dinner

016Growing up in the Midwest in the 70s, I ate more than my share of Big Macs and Quarter Pounders with cheese. Garbage food to be sure, but the experience somehow left burgers near and dear to my heart. When I get the craving these days, I head to In and Out where I order a 3×3, medium-rare, extra toast on the bun. ketchup and mustard only. It’s a richly fatty bomb that always satisfies.

When I want a grown up burger for dinner with friends, I stop by Model Bakery in Napa for some fantastic buns, and Safeway for ground beef. Then I make a version of steak tartare that I sear on the grill.  Here’s my recipe for flavored rare cheeseburgers.

For the Burger Meat
2  lbs. ground beef, 80% lean / 20% fat
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. whole grain mustard1/2 t. garlic, finely minced
1/2 t. anchovy filet, finely minced
1 1/2 t. capers, finely minced2 T. flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 1/2 t. kosher salt
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper


Chop the capers, anchovy, garlic, and parsley.


Toss everything into the mixer fitted with a paddle, or just use a wooden spoon in a bowl.


Mix on low speed until the mixture is uniform.


Form into patties that match the shape and size of your buns, in my case, Model was out of burger buns, so we used their sausage buns made from the same dough. Prepare all of your finix’s, and get the grill nice a hot.


I always cook them rare, about a minute and a half on each side so that the flavor will be like beef tartare. I’m a ketchup and mustard guy, but I put mayo out for others.


Happy Summer BBQ!