Monday, April 26, 2010

Sasha's Kitchen: Best Steak Burgers With Shake Shack Inspired Sauce

Usually, I have always purchased organic ground beef for my burgers, but I decided to prepare a quality steak burger, in the spirit of one of my favorite NYC burger places, Shake Shack.  Shake Shack is Danny Meyer's famous burger joint, of course with spots all over Manhattan (and long lines, especially on sunny days as well).  I'm waiting for them to open a Park Slope / Prospect Heights outpost in Brooklyn, because it is definitely time!

I wasn't obsessed with making an identical burger to Shake Shack's, but I absolutely love the Shack Sauce and their burgers, so I looked at Kenjie Lopez-Alt's article from Serious Eats on reverse engineering the famous Shake Shack burger for some ideas and inspiration.  According to Alt, his "sources" believe that the true Shake Shack burger is a mixture of three types of ground beef - sirloin, well marbled brisket and well marbled beef chunk.  For those of you who are going to try the burger will all three cuts, keep in mind that well marbled probably means to use the "second cut" brisket or chunk, which is not as lean.

Brisket is hard to come by in such small quantities, as Lopez-Alt only calls for 4 oz in his reverse engineered recipe, and most butchers generally sell three to five pound briskets.  So this time, I decided not so search for a small amount of brisket, but to just go with a mixture of sirloin and well marbled beef chunk.

I prepared the reverse engineered Shack Sauce just as Lopez-Alt directed, using his recipe.  I may want to adjust next time to add a bit more heat, and ketchup, but it was delicious.  It reminded me of the "Animal Style" sauce at In-N-Out Burger.  In addition, I went with provolone rather than American Cheese.

Steak Burgers (recipe derived loosely from this site)
8 lb well marbled beef  chunk
8 lb sirloin
salt and pepper to taste
4 Martin's Sandwich Rolls (potato rolls)
4 leaves of green lettuce
4 slices provolone cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 T ketchup
1 T yellow mustard
4 slices kosher dill pickle (I used fairly thick slices)
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp paprika
canola oil
2 T of butter (melted)

Ask your butcher to grind up the steaks for you together.  Then, when you get the meat home, form into four patties and season with salt and pepper.  Toast the Martin's buns with the melted butter on each side. Grill the burgers using a grill pan or a large skillet, using canola oil.  Make sure to season the burgers with salt and pepper first.  Top with the provolone cheese and cover with tin foil for the last minute or two of cooking.  I like my burger medium, which takes about eight minutes to prepare over medium heat.  

To make the sauce, following Lopez-Alt's recipe, combine the ketchup, mayo, mustard, pickle slices, garlic powder, paprika and cayenne in a small food processor.  Top the cheeseburgers with the sauce and lettuce.  You can add a slice of tomato if you like as well.  These burgers (the recipe makes four) were very tasty and Shake Shack-esque, although I still love the real deal.

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