Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon butter or mild olive oil
  • 1 to 1 1/4 pounds fresh ground beef (preferably 15 to 20 percent fat)
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 hamburger buns
  • 1 red onion, sliced very thin
  • 1 tomato, sliced thin
  • Iceberg lettuce leaves
  • Small whole pickles
  • Thin cheddar or Swiss cheese slices
  • Bacon strips, cooked crisp
  • Butter, at room temperature
  • Ketchup
  • Mayonnaise
  • Dijon mustard
  • Salsa
  • Potato chips
Preparation

In a small sauté pan, over high heat, sauté the shallots in the butter or oil until soft, about 5 minutes.

Divide the meat into 4 portions. One at a time, flatten each by chopping and spreading the meat with light strokes of your chef’s knife. Season each with salt, pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of the shallots. Blend seasonings into the meat, chopping and turning it as you shape the portions into 4 1/2 to 5-inch round patties, each 1/4-inch thick.


Toast the hamburger buns and distribute them to your guests. Suggest that they dress the bottom halves of their rolls as they wish while you cook the burgers.

Lightly dust the surface of a large, hot sauté pan with salt. When the pan is very hot, but not smoking, lay a patty in the pan. Rapidly add a second burger. Brown the meat, about 20 seconds. Turn patties to other side. Cook until done, about 1 minute. Remove cooked burgers to a warm platter. Repeat process with 2 remaining burgers.

Place finished burgers onto guests’ buns as quickly as possible so they can add their finishing touches. Serve potato chips alongside.