The hamburger may, today, be an all-American favourite, and the country’s famous franchise chains means there is hardly a high street in the world without a US-style burger bar, but this familiar-shaped ground meat patty was originally made at Hamburg in Germany (hence its name). It’s easy enough to make your own, using lean steak minced beef, with an egg to help it bind, and here we have added Italian seasoning to give it a bit of a contemporary twist.
- 500g lean steak minced beef
- 1 medium egg
- 1tbsp garlic Italian seasoning
- 1-2tbsp olive oil
- 100g mozzarella, drained and cut into 4 slices
- 4 small bunches of mini tomatoes on the vine
- 4 rashers of bacon
- 4 burger buns
- 1 small red onion, finely sliced (optional)
- Fully prepared wild rocket to garnish
Mix together the beef, egg, and Italian seasoning. Divide the mixture into four, and mould into burger shapes.
In a large non-stick frying pan, heat the oil and, over a medium heat, cook the burgers for 5 mins on each side. Turn the burgers, add a slice of mozzarella on top, baste with the juices of the pan so the cheese starts to melt, and cook for a further 2 mins, basting with the juices from the pan. Meanwhile, add the tomatoes to the pan to cook for a couple of minutes, turning.
Meanwhile, heat a griddle and cook the bacon until nice and crispy on both sides.
Toast the burger buns, cut side down, on the griddle to absorb the lovely bacon flavours and warm the bun.
Pop the griddled bacon on the toasted bun, carefully add the mozzarella-topped burger and hot tomatoes and top with sliced onions, if wished. Garnish with wild rocket and serve with a portion of chips if you’re feeling particularly peckish.
Top tip for making Italian burgers
We say to cook the burgers for 5 minutes each side, but it depends how thick your burgers are, and how well cooked you like your meat.