Among some of the foods I am mystified by the lack of in Canada, Martin’s potato rolls are at the top of my list. If you’ve ever had a Shake Shack burger, you know what I’m talking about. These soft, fluffy, and (mysteriously) yellow buns are key to perfecting your at-home fast food burger game, but alas, they are next to impossible to track down on this side of the continent, never mind this country.
In light of this chronic potato bun shortage, alternatives must be located that can yield a comparable home-style fast food burger. The easiest solution that I have found comes in the form of slider buns, which consistently seem to be softer and more potato bun-esque than other options. So while the original recipe for these burgers yielded 4 regular-sized patties, I have just slightly tweaked things to allow for slider-sized alternatives for those of us who are coming up empty-handed on the bun front.
Another tweak that deviates from the original recipe comes from the addition of the burger sauce. I’m big fan of anything that can claim the designation of “sauce”, and get especially excited by the prospect of “secret sauces” and “burger sauces” because they usually involve a heavy dose of mayonnaise. The sauce in this recipe is my own creation and I can happily (though unexpectedly) report that it works equally as well when substituted with vegan mayo. That being said, preparing a vegan mayo to eat on your cheeseburger is a bit like ordering a frappuccino and just omitting the caramel drizzle on the whipped cream – you’ve already committed to some trashy eats so why not just go all the way? Don’t let me stop you though – you do you.
BA’s Best: Burger Deluxe
Taken directly from BA’s Best arsenal, with some necessary practical tweaks
Makes 10 sliders
Generous ¼ cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp lemon juice (~ ½ lemon)
1 clove of garlic, finely minced
1 tbsp finely chopped Italian/flat-leaf parsley
Dash of hot sauce
Burgers and Assembly:
1 ½ lb ground beef chuck (at least 20% fat or higher)
1 ¼ tsp kosher salt
10 slices American cheese (do you want a fast food burger or don’t you??)
10 soft slider buns (preferably potato rolls)
10 slices Roma tomato (optional)
10 small lettuce leaves, preferably butter or baby gem (optional)
Make the burger sauce by combining all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. This sauce is hideously good on EVERYTHING, especially fries or any kind of roasted potato.
Gently break up the meat with your fingertips and pour in the salt and a good grind of black pepper. Gently mix the salt and pepper into the mix, being careful to not handle the meat too roughly. Divide the meat in half and divide each half into 5 pieces. You should have 10 equal-sized lumps, which if you are using a kitchen scale will each weigh around 2.5 oz. If you find that you are not able to get 10 portions that are all the same size (e.g. you have some scrawny ones), redistribute the meat into only 8 sliders. Shape the meat into patties by cupping your hands around each piece while you gently press down and rotate on the top of the patty. Continue shaping the patties into rounds that are just slightly wider than the diameter of the buns you are using. Using your thumb, make an indentation in the centre of each burger to keep it flat while it cooks. Place the patties on a lined baking sheet and refrigerate until ready to cook.
Heat a gas grill to high. Place the patties on the grill and cook until grill marks appear, about 1 minute. Flip and quickly top each burger with a cheese slice. Cook for another 1-2 minutes, depending on the thickness of your patties. Transfer the burgers to a plate.
To serve, split the potato buns open and spread each half with burger sauce. Build the burgers with the patties, lettuce, and tomato plus any other desired toppings (pickles, onions, leftover bacon). Let stand for 3 minutes before serving to get extra saucy and melty. Lick your fingers obnoxiously after every bite.