‘Route 395’ burger, by David Theiss (recipe)
Summer might be winding to an end, but it’s not quite time to put that barbecue away just yet! There are plenty of quick recipes to make using the grill, perfect for those busy school nights. And what is the best reminder of summer to grill up on a beautiful fall evening? Hamburgers! Burgers are extremely versatile as you can add almost any spices or ingredients for flavor, and the cooking time is relatively short either on the grill or the stovetop. Today I have a fantastic hamburger recipe that has gained lots of popularity recently. Sometimes known as the “Route 66 Burger,” we fondly named our mixture of ground beef, mushrooms, Swiss cheese and spices the “Route 395 Burger.” You see what we did there? This mixture of ingredients creates the most decadent burger that is bursting with flavor and a moist texture. The recipe I offer is simple enough to create on a busy school night, and delicious enough to gather the whole family!
To start, you are going to want a ground beef that sits about 18 percent fat and 82 percent lean; typically ground chuck is the perfect option. This ratio of fat not only creates a burger that is juicier and more flavorful, but it also provides a better texture so the burger does not crumble or lose its shape when being cooked. Next, you are going to want a higher quality Swiss cheese that is denser and with less moisture. I like Jarlsberg cheese. You want a higher quality cheese to ensure that the cooking temperature will not melt it completely out of the burger. Lastly, you need mushrooms, and this choice is entirely up to you. I use regular button mushrooms, which provide a classic flavor and texture, but you can get creative. Maybe the savory flavor of a Shiitake mushroom adds a bit of boldness, or a Porcini mushroom offers a bit of nuttiness? You decide. As for the spices, I think just some salt and pepper do wonders, but you can always add your favorites for an extra kick.
This burger recipe is simple and delicious, but if your night is just too busy to make it from scratch, come see us at Butler Meats and pick some up right from the case. We not only have our “Route 395 Burger” but also quite a few more options like the Jalapeno burger, bacon burger, or Battle Mountain Burger to satisfy everyone’s taste!
“Route 395 Burger” recipe — serves 6
2 lbs of ground beef
½ cup diced Swiss cheese (1/4 in cubes)
½ cup button mushrooms (sliced and 1/4rd)
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
¼ teaspoon fine black pepper
To assemble, first chop the cheese and mushrooms into small pieces. The cheese should be around quarter-inch cubes, but the mushrooms should be a bit smaller. I suggest slicing the mushroom first, then cutting those slices in quarters. Too big of mushroom pieces may make your burger fall apart. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and hand mix well until it is all unified. Press into 1/3 lb. patties and toss on a preheated grill at 300 degrees. I suggest using a flat-top or cookie sheet to cook these burgers on to ensure the burger holds its shape. (Also avoiding any cheesy messes in your burners). Turn the burgers several times while cooking, and avoid pressing the burger with a spatula as it squeezes out all the delicious juices. Grill the burgers until the internal temperature is about 155 degrees. Nestle the burger between two buns with your favorite toppings and condiments, and enjoy!
David Theiss is the owner of Butler Gourmet Meats, serving Carson City and Northern Nevada for more than 46 years.