Just in time for Memorial Day, this month’s theme for World on a Plate is grilling! I don’t have a backyard, or a grill, but I do have a cast iron pan, which can be a worthy substitute. Since I’m representing America, I immediately knew that I would be bringing burgers to the party. But I didn’t want to go with just any old burger – so I stuffed some cheese inside to make them extra special. That’s right: a cheese-stuffed burger. When you cook the burger, the cheese inside melts, creating an ooey-gooey surprise that any cheeseburger-loving person is bound to go nuts over. You can even go extreme and put more cheese on top, but that’s just crazy talk (which I fully support).
Although hamburgers are an iconic American food, they can be traced to Germany – to a little place called Hamburg, in fact. According to What’s Cooking America, the original Hamburg Steak was salt beef, and bore “little resemblance to the hamburger we know today.” German immigrants brought this dish with them to America, shredding the tough, inexpensive beef and forming it into patties. And those are the humble origins of the hamburger!
Stuffing a burger with cheese is easy as can be. Simple form the meat into a patty as you would for a normal hamburger, then stuff a square of cheese inside and smooth the meat over. If it’s sealed in then the cheese won’t melt out during cooking. You can cook them on the stovetop or, as I did, in a cast-iron skillet over high heat on the stove. For another excellent burger recipe and some great tips on grilling check out this post over at Kitchen Riffs.
Wondering about World on a Plate? World on a plate is a blogging cultural exchange. On the last Sunday of the month, bloggers from all over the world get together to interpret a food through the lens of their home country cooking. Each blogger will produce a wonderful dish featuring the food chosen that is typical of her/his home country and will tell us a bit about the dish.
- 1 pound (1/2 kilo) ground beef
- ½ cup finely chopped onion (from ½ large onion)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
- 1.3 ounces (36 grams) cheddar cheese, cut into 4 even squares
- Vegetable oil
- In a large bowl mix together the ground beef, onion, garlic powder, and worcestershire sauce until just combined (do not over-mix).
- Form into four equal-sized patties (this will make four quarter-pounders - feel free to make them smaller as well).
- Take one piece of cheese and stuff it in the center of one patty. Smooth the meat over the cheese to fully seal it in.
- Repeat with remaining patties and cheese.
- Heat a cast iron skillet or grill plate over medium-high heat (or heat the grill). Coat lightly with oil.
- Add the burgers, working in batches if necessary, and cook until seared on both sides and cooked through to your liking, about 5 minutes per side (often the second side only needs about 3 minutes).
- Remove from the pan and put on buns. Top with lettuce, tomato, caramelized onions, or your favorite toppings. Serve immediately.