What do you do when “burgers” is the request for dinner and there’s no ground beef in the house? Visit the chest freezer, for starters, to grab a bag of local, grass-fed stew beef. Then, because it’s so lean, a goodly portion of homemade prosciutto fat, and because a custom grind clamors to be bespoke, a handful of herbs (lime thyme, chives, oregano) and a clove of garlic.
The result (plus a pinch of salt and a generous grind of pepper) is pretty perfect burger material.
After I formed the meat into patties, I busied myself breaking down an acorn squash. Peeled, eighthed, and spun through the saladacco, it made lovely thin spirals of squash for frying and left a whole bunch of concentrically etched shards for minestronification at a later date.
They fried up very nicely, forming a crisp, sweet, and highly addictive tangle.
The meat, cooked medium, sat on simple whole wheat bread (crusts removed because “buns” shouldn’t be too stiff or crunchy) with gochujang, ketchup, and baby lettuces from the garden. I would have added kimchi, but I had finished it at breakfast. We had a jar of cucumber pickles (not, sadly, homemade–though they’re up in the garden and should be flowering soon) so I added one to each plate. And there was a big bowl of the same salad, with baby carrots added for color and crunch.
To drink, another of this summer’s favorite rosés: the 09 Diamarine Cuvée Spéciale Coteaux Varois en Provence. Cold, bracing acidity, herbs that got extremely snuggly with those in the meat, delicate fruit, and just enough of an elegant tannic spine to handle this semi-burly meal. Everything you need, nothing you don’t, though I’m thinking at this juncture that maybe it should come in magnums with a handle on the side.