A burger that isn't juicy is a major letdown, and it's all too easy to end up with a dried-out burger at a cookout if care isn't taken in the recipe. Meat can dry out rapidly when faced with the intense heat of a grill, which is why keeping the burger mix hydrated with moisture and fat makes all the difference. Two ingredients that can get that job done with ease are olive oil and Worcestershire sauce, a pair of pantry staples that deliver both flavor and hydration.
Fats are essential for crafting a burger that drips with delicious juice; sometimes, the fat content in the meat itself isn't enough. Adding a drizzle of olive oil coats the meat and provides an extra helping of lipids, helping to conserve moisture and impart extra flavor as well. A small amount of Worcestershire sauce into the meat introduces a dash of hydration and a hefty helping of umami flavor, imparting a double punch of savoriness and tender texture. Combine the powers of both in your burger meat, and you'll definitely be able to taste the difference.
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A Drizzle Of Fat Makes A World Of Difference
If you want a juicy burger, fat is non-negotiable. Fats are what hydrate the meat from the inside out and cause that ooze of flavor-packed juice when biting in. But before added fats go into your mix, starting with a good, high-fat ground beef mixture is key. The standard is usually 80/20, but some might even recommend a higher fat content if you can find it. It's possible to have a butcher make a custom batch for you or grind the meat yourself to adjust the fat levels as needed.
Alongside the meat's internal fat content, an extra helping of fat by way of olive oil greases the patties and keeps them tender even after getting flame-kissed on the grill. A tablespoon per pound of ground beef does the trick. Olive oil also brings its own unique flavor to the burgers; using good quality olive oil or even infused olive oil helps impart these flavors in a more pronounced way.
If you don't have olive oil on hand or want to use a different sort of fat for your burgers, butter also works wonders. Grating cold butter and incorporating it thoroughly into the ground beef ensures even flavor and moisture throughout and adds that decadent buttery flavor that makes a burger even more gourmet.
Sauce Adds Essential Moisture And Umami
The second half of this burger-boosting duo is Worcestershire sauce. This classic, flavor-enhancing sauce packs heavy umami power from its long list of ingredients, which include anchovies, onions and garlic, vinegar, molasses, tamarind, and plenty of seasonings. However, it's also a hydrating addition to the burger meat and a tenderizer: The acids in the vinegar denature protein, keeping the beef soft and supple. There's a reason why Worcestershire sauce is such a popular marinade ingredient.
If you don't have any Worcestershire sauce in the fridge, other sauces would work well here, too. If you have them on hand, soy sauce or even fish sauce can play a similar role, playing up umami while keeping the meat moist. As with olive oil, just a tablespoon per pound of meat is needed for an effective seasoning. Pack some napkins because these will be some truly juicy burgers.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.