As an identical twin, people often ask, “does your twin sister cook too?” YES! Some time after her decade of vegetarianism – she mastered making homemade burger patties. They are so much like polpettine, or Classic Italian Meatballs, which as children we learned how to shape in the palms of our hands while standing on step stools next to Mamma. Dimity infuses her burgers with the Italian trinity of garlic, parmesan and olive oil and a generous pour of whatever beer is keeping cold in the refrigerator. It was surely winter when she crafted this particular recipe, which celebrates a good strong stout – always a happy pairing with beef. (In the summer, a pilsner would lighten this recipe). But truly, this recipe is made for creativity, begging you to add whatever seasoning or spices you are craving in the moment!
Now, do you need grass-fed beef? Well, I would say yes. We are what we eat, and so are animals. Grass-fed cows graze on grass, which they’re bodies are built for digesting. Beef from Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) – standard, industrial cattle-raising operations – are fed corn and often untraceable foods that result in a less nutritious, lower-quality meat. They are often standing knobby-knee deep in their own manure, and have scant wiggle room to breath. We absorb what we eat, and that includes the toxins and stress endured by animals raised in CAFOs and slaughtered in large-scale facilities. Apologies if the topic is gruesome, but when we eat meat, it’s good to be mindful of what we choose to feed our bodies and how it impacts the land, and our future. If you spend an extra buck or two on grass-fed beef, I’d say it’s 110% worth it.
- 2 lb grass-fed ground beef
- 1/3 cup yellow onion, diced
- 1/4 cup Parmesan, grated (sub with cheddar)
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup parsley leaves, coarsely chopped
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons stout beer
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons sunflower seed oil (sub with ghee or butter)
- In a large bowl, use your hands to mix together all of the ingredients (except the sunflower seed oil).
- Take about 1/4 cup of the ground beef mix between your hands and form into a disc-shape patty. Set on a plate and repeat with all of the ground beef.
- Heat the sunflower seed oil (ghee or butter) in a cast iron skillet or large pan over high heat.
- When the oil begins to smoke lightly and shimmer, add the burgers, spaced about 1 inch apart. Cook the burgers until browned and slightly charred on one side (about 3-4 minutes) and then flip and repeat on the second side for the same amount of time. The burger will be medium rare. To continue cooking for medium-well and well, cover the pan with a lid and reduce the heat to medium. Cook for another 3-4 minutes on the same side.
- If adding cheese, top while the burgers are still in the pan, and cover for 1 minute. Serve on your favorite bread, with any garnishes you wish: sauerkraut and swiss anyone?
Allergens: dairy, eggs