A hamburger or ‘Burger’ is an extremely popular type of food. Burgers consist of two sliced buns with a ground beef patty. Burger toppings include lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, or chilies. Burgers also have a special sauce lathered up inside the buns and meat to give the burger moistness and flavor. This sauce can be tomato ketchup, mayonnaise, or any other creative relish. Variations of the thousand island sauce are a popular relish for sesame seed buns. Burgers counted as quick and easy food and were promoted by the fast-food industry globally. Soon different regions around the world concocted their variation of the classic hamburger according to preferred taste.
Origin of the Hamburger
The inspiration for the original hamburger is from Germany. However, the exact concept of the sandwich was invented a little later. It all started when German immigrants began settling in Chicago and New York. Many started opening restaurants to earn a livelihood. These restaurants often had the Hamburg steak on the menu, which became quite popular. During the Industrial Revolution, factory workers were often fed from food carts. They were fed the Hamburg steak that was quite difficult to eat while standing. So one creative cook placed the meat between two bread slices, thus inventing the Hamburg sandwich. This sandwich became popular throughout the country and soon evolved into a burger.
The Burger Today
After World War 2, the modern hamburger began spreading to other countries as fast food became increasingly globalized. Popular fast-food chains in the US post-second world war McDonald’s, In-n-out and Wendy’s, and more.
The success of large fast-food chains supplemented this steady process of globalization. These fast-food chains yearned to increase profits and started by creating franchises in other countries. As burgers began spreading around the globe, many variations emerged according to region and taste. For example, kangaroo burgers became popular in Australia, where ground meat was derived from kangaroo. Veggie burgers became popular in India to cater to the large vegetarian population.
Many different buns can be used in a burger. The bun you choose depends on what kind of burger it is.
Plain burger buns hold the burger well and get the job done. A plain bun works well with a juicy patty and a creative topping.
Sesame seed buns add more crunch to the burger and a dash of flavor. These buns are great with a thousand island and chili sauce burger sauce, melted cheese, and an extra juicy beef patty.
Potato buns have a slightly more complex taste. They are made from potato flour that replaced wheat flour. These buns are also a delicious option if looking for something gluten-free.
Brioche buns are also quite popular when it comes to burgers. These buns have a higher butter and egg content and thus are moister and smoother. They add a soft richness to the burger that burger lovers will enjoy.
Types of Burger Patties
To make delicious burgers, you have to choose the right meat. You can buy ground meat from the grocery store or request your local butcher to grind the meat for you.
The Brisket is a highly flavorful cut that makes lovely burgers. If you want a lean grind, choose a flat-cut brisket. Use the fattier nose cut or second cut if you want full-out richness.
Dry-aged beef is also a good option for burgers. This consists of cuts like the rib-eye and gives your burger patty a more steak-like concentrated taste.
Grass-fed beef is also an excellent choice. This beef has a lesser percentage of fat compared to corn-fed beef. With grass-fed beef, you can make a lean burger with a cleaner taste. You can always add ground fat to the ground meat for added flavor.
Short rub beef makes a delicious burger. You butcher will grind a boneless short rib. This cut is meaty and tender, and delicious.
If you want an exceptionally luxe burger, choose Wagyu beef. Wagyu cows are bred in Japan and make the most delectable and tender beef. This beef has melt-in-your-mouth softness.
If you want a beef patty with a strong flavor, choose Sirloin beef. This beef will make your burger stand out with its beefy, marbled taste.
You can also simply buy the ‘Ground Hamburger’ from the supermarket. This blend contains pieces from different roasting and steaks. The fat percentage is often mentioned on the packaging.
Why are Burgers so Popular?
Wondered what is a burger? The above explains the origins of burgers and the types of buns and beef used to make the burger. But what is it about burgers that make them so loved worldwide? Almost 50 billion burgers are consumed annually in the US alone. Almost 60% of all sandwiches sold in the country are burgers.
So, what makes burgers so desired? Several factors could be the reason. Firstly, burgers are convenient to eat and quick to prepare. Secondly, you can have different varieties of patties. You can have meat patties made from beef, lamb, fish, or any other meat you prefer. You can also have meatless burgers such as veggie and plant-based burgers. Many plant-based burgers patties are made from ground beans, pulses, and veggies. They taste delicious and have a similar texture to meat. Thirdly, there are many options for burger buns. You can use white bread buns if you prefer. If looking for a gluten-free option, you can also use whole-wheat bread or buckwheat buns. Potato buns and bao buns are also often preferred.
This variety adds to the popularity of burgers. Whether it’s a gluten-free or a meatless alternative, there is something for everyone.
Our Final Thoughts
That’s a wrap on what is a burger. This wonderful delicacy has tantalized many tastebuds over the years, which is why people all around the world can’t stop having it!