Modernist Cuisine: The Ultimate Hamburger

A chef shares the secret on how to make a very juicy, tender, ultimate hamburger.
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  • 1We believe any dish can be made at exquisite levels of quality if you really care about it.
  • 2Modernist cuisine is both about modern style food but also very traditional style food...
  • 3...that we made better or more conveniently in a new way.
  • 4So, we cover things like the ideal way to make a hamburger.
  • 5We look at everywhere of the burger from the bun, the cheese, the ketchup,...
  • 6...the garnish, the patty, obviously that's the very important one.
  • 7And we took it layer by layer, the buns, it had to be that perfect balance...
  • 8...between that sort of delicate sweetness of a traditional hamburger bun,...
  • 9...where it doesn't overwhelm the rest of the components.
  • 10But also, it's interesting and has that most ideal fluffy texture.
  • 11The cheese is constructed,...
  • 12...so we have access to different emulsifiers and the most fine salts.
  • 13In this case, a combination of sodium hexametaphosphates and some carrageenans,...
  • 14...carrageenans being a seaweed extract that help to gel dairy there.
  • 15And so, we created what people love in an American cheese slice,...
  • 16...which is how fluid it is and unctuous.
  • 17But recreating it from delicious cheese Gruyere...
  • 18...or really good aged Gruyere or some cheddar,...
  • 19...people would have experienced it when they put a slice of cheddar on their cheeseburger.
  • 20It breaks down and you have the oil,...
  • 21...the energy very extensive that the oil kind of splits out...
  • 22...and it has the flavor, but the texture is just not right.
  • 23So, we were able to create that perfect texture with really good cheese.
  • 24The patty, grinding the meat and molding it as it comes out of the grinder...
  • 25... and keeping the strands parallel,...
  • 26...so that when you bite into the hamburger,...
  • 27...it's just a very even bite and so it's very juicy.
  • 28And that's molded and frozen and then sliced on a bun sauce.
  • 29Yeah, I think it's just very even-looking patties.
  • 30After that, we took this experiment quite a bit further...
  • 31...and we worked with the technique called cryofrying.
  • 32It's where you cook a food whether it's sous vide or traditionally...
  • 33...but just until it's cooked through.
  • 34And then, you sear it by first dipping it in liquid nitrogen...
  • 35...to freeze the surface and then frying it in a very hot oil.
  • 36And what happens during that process is that the surface that was frozen thaws
  • 37...but the very outside bratens, so you get this beautiful crust...
  • 38...but you don't get that ingredients those you're used to in traditional searing.
  • 39And so everything is very juicy, everything is very even...
  • 40...but you get this very intense caramelization or a minor reaction on the meat.
  • 41So with the burger, we cook it sous vide but we don't vacuum-seal.
  • 42Just in a Ziploc bag, the butter so that you don't collapse the structure of the patty.
  • 43To 53 Celsius, that's just like basically rare and then follow that cryofry process.
  • 44Quite an amazing patty,...
  • 45...all the textures that you want, all the flavors very juicy, very tender.
  • 46Overall, this process takes about 36 hours.
  • 47And, I think there's something really cool about that.
  • 48Now there're people who say,...
  • 49..."Well, did you really need to put all that effort onto a hamburger?"
  • 50And we say, "If you love hamburgers, it's kinda cool knowing what the ultimate burger is."
  • 51And maybe, you won't have that ultimate burger everyday, maybe you never have it.
  • 52But it's still cool to know what the ultimate burger is.