When forming burgers, I use a hamburger press. I would then flatten the burgers with my hands to make them thinner. This way when cooked on the grill, they don't get too thick. If the burgers are formed thin, they will be almost like the fast food restaurant burgers, depending on the type of ground beef that is used. If someone likes a thicker burger, they can put two burgers on their bun.
Using my hands to flatten the burgers took a lot of time and a bit messy. I now put the formed burgers on a wax paper lined jelly-roll pan, leaving space between each one. I cover the burgers with wax paper and take another jelly-roll pan and press all the burgers at once. This is so much faster than pressing them out individually. I use a wide pancake turner to move them. Any leftover burger patties, I cover the burgers with plastic wrap or foil and leave in the freezer for a few hours until they harden. If they don't all fit in one layer, use wax paper or plastic wrap in between the burgers to form layers. I remove them and place in a freezer bag.
Another idea that I haven't tried is to put separate mounds of ground beef on the pans and then press. This would eliminate the need to using the burger press altogether.
By it's.only.me from PA
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My son showed me how to keep my ground beef patties from swelling up like pillows. I am really old and didn't know this.
First, cut small squares out of wax paper to set you hamburger patties on. Then form patties, no more than one inch thick and set them on a piece of wax paper and place them on a cookie sheet.
When making meatloaf or hamburger patties, add chopped vegetables and oatmeal or bran for fiber! If you make your own veggie juices at home as I do, use the leftover pulp.
When forming hamburger patties, leave the middle thinner or even put a hole in the middle (like a donut). When they cook, the middle will fill in and the thickness will be the same all around.
Adding a tablespoon of mayonnaise to your ground beef before patting out hamburgers keeps them juicy on the grill. This prevents them from drying out.
Use the thin plastic that bacon comes on, wash it with hot soapy water to clean it up good. Cut it in half and use to pat hamburger patties on and then freeze.
A favorite of my sister in-law. If you like the strong flavor of sauerkraut, you'll love these burgers!
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Can we all share tips/shortcuts/techniques for shaping patties (of any kind)?
I grease a plastic bottle lid, shape the patty with it on a parchment paper.
Lakshmi from NJ
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When I worked at a IceCream parlor/diner. we shaped hamburger patties by rolling hamburger out to 1/4 to 1/2 inch thickness, then we took a butter bowl lid and cut out patties with it. We called them barge burgers.
I roughly roll into balls, then squash and use the back of a spatula or a dough scraper to make them into circles, pushing down on the edges to hold them together. This works on ground meat, meat and rice, and salmon and bread crumbs.
I've used the 1/2 c. measuring cup out of the standard Tupperware set. Pack the cup tight with raw meat, turn over onto waxed paper, and then flatten by hand or with something flat. This makes quarter pounders. If you want a bigger patty, use a bigger measuring cup!
Then lay the patties out one by one onto a cookie sheet lined w/ waxed paper, add a second layer if needed, and pop into the freezer to solidify the meat. Can also freeze for later use after this step.
I learned once by watching 30 minute meals with Rachael Ray to make an indentation in the middle of the burger. This allows for shrinkage and keeps the burgers relatively flat! It looks strange to cook, but it works like a charm!
I have managed large restaurants and been a cook in AK for 60 gold miners. I used to mix things in the meat, making them like mini meatloafs.
Up in AK, we used everything till it was used up. The coffee cans gave me insulation, stacked well, were already on hand, and resisted freezer burn.
If you can modify something that is the perfect size, you are ahead of the game.
NOTE: For mommies and daddies, sometimes a hamburger is too much for little ones. I used to make my daughter a little pattie, and used a cookie cutter to make two circles out of a bread heel. It was just right for her little hands.
I have a saucer about 1/2" deep I put a piece of plastic wrap on it and flatten a hamburger ball then wrap the plastic wrap around the hamburger patty and put in a freezer bag/ You can do 5 or 6 pounds of hamburger patties in about 20 minutes.
Hi just saw this, a couple of months late, but I'll share anyway. I use pampered chefs Ice cream sandwich maker to make my hamburger patties, and then I layer between wax paper and wrap in freezer paper.
Does anybody know of a good hamburger seasoning? I raise beef cattle for a living and haven't found a good seasoning to mix in when I make my ground beef patties. Help is really appreciated! Thanks.
By Jeremiah Finnestad from Minooka, IL
I love just using "Jane's mixed up crazy salt" on my ground beef. It is a seasonal with different herbs and spices.
In Cricket's recipe hint she mentioned making hamburgers in a press; what is this like? I do enjoy Thrifty fun. It helps to show that we sometimes do things differently, but basically we are the same the world over.
By Jean Heasley from Maffra Gippsland, Australia
One way to shape your homemade beef patties is to place the seasoned meat in a ziplock bag and press and shape. They won't stick and it is definitely a less messy method.
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When making hamburger patties at home, try adding some chopped bell pepper and onion with a tablespoon or two of milk. Mix altogether and fry or BBQ. Makes a tasty juicy burger.
Instead of buying the ready made hamburger patties at the store which are more expensive than bulk ground beef and have no seasonings, I have started making my own.