Burger flippers

Okay, it's almost July 4 and all the food magazines have pictures of grilled steaks or burgers on the cover. One of my biggest peeves in watching amateurs at work is the impulse to keep flipping that burger. God knows why? They should be cooked once and once only on each side. Same with steaks. If you want cute grill marks on a steak slide it 45 degrees to one side before you turn it over. Thoughts.

  • Posted by: pierino
  • June 25, 2012


Sam1148 June 25, 2012
And here's the SCIENCE.
Outcome...flipping burgers is fine.

Although I'm a non-flipper as I like the crusty bits on a burger. Plus, I noticed they where pan frying the burgers not grilling them. Flipping while grilling can result in burgers sticking to the grill before a crust forms. So, I'm a flip-flopper on this issue.
ChefOno June 25, 2012

"To prevent loss of juices" -- there's your urban myth right there. Mid-rant isn't exactly the best time to question such statements, not in my experience anyway.

Reiney June 25, 2012
Actually, school taught us to flip both steaks & burgers often to cook evenly & through, and prevent loss of juices - that it was an urban myth to flip only once. The lecture was given by a ranting melodramatic Italian chef so I'm not going to question!
pierino June 25, 2012
Italy is not really known for it's great burgers, and I've spent a lot of time there. But their steaks (bistecca fiorentina), from real Chianna beef should not be flipped either. The steak will still cook evenly. What I'm talking about are the frantic flippers who don't think they look like they are cooking if they are not flipping---typically college kids and patio daddy-o's. And they also flip hot dogs! How dumb is that?
bigpan June 25, 2012
Make burgers by hand - not pre-done mass produced stuff. High heat. Flip once. Rest. Eat.
While you are waiting and wanting to flip or otherwise disturb the food, try sipping continuously on a nice glass of malbec.
pierino June 25, 2012
Yes, bigpan. And if possible grind your own meat so that you know the pieces are coming from a single animal. If your are buying ground meat in bulk at the supermarket or warehouse club you run the risk that one single cow carrying e-coli could contaminate the meat from 100 cows.
ChefOno June 25, 2012
Grinding your own meat also allows you to select particularly tasty muscles and boost the fat content up to where it oughta be.
ChefOno June 25, 2012

Better the flip flop flip flop flip than squeezing the juice outa them with the backside of a spatula…

pierino June 25, 2012
Pressing a burger is another criminal act. Although when those juices hit your coal they are going to come back up as flavor. One exception to the rule against pressing is a spatchcocked chicken "al mattone" or "under a brick", very Tuscan.
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