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Burger: 70/30 80/20 90/10

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
A little insight: I've been smokin for only 2-1/2 years and I've done -a lot- of burgers in that time. As I have recently said, I smoke five or six nights a week year round. The burgers that I currently make are 80/20 because I gotten the best flavor from that ratio. I have tried 70/30 and get way to much shrinkage and the 90/10 always turn out just a little dry and the flavor just isn't there. I recently recieved a tweet "The best hamburger is made by choosing the leanest piece of round steak you can find, having the butcher cut off..."
I totally disagree with this. Does anyone else have an opinion on this.

Just for the book: My burgers are now smoked using 1# 80/20 and 1/4# fresh sausage and 1 egg oh yea and a little bread crumbs. They are dyn-o-mite!

post #2 of 8
I like 85 -15 ground chuck here.
post #3 of 8
be a chef 80/20 is perfect for ground meats
post #4 of 8
I'll go with the 80/20 crowd with this one.
post #5 of 8
I'm in favor of 80/20 - 85/15 fat to lean ratio for the best flavor. Hamburger meat by it's very nature is the trimmings, the parts that, as whole muscle, is tough and cannot be made into good final cuts. It comes from the neck meat, shanks, plate, trimmings from the chuck and round, flank and tip. 1st from the trimmings come whole muscle worthy of stew beef or cube steak material; chunks big enough to merchandise into those cuts as they yield a higher GP than trim. What's left goes into burger. It can't be merchandized into palatable cuts so it's ground; now it is another merchandizeable product that can be sold based on fat-to-lean ratios, varied by the amount of fat added to lean, either attached naturally or added from other sources, such as frozen and thawed bull or local canner beef for lean, or fat chunks saved during processing. Anything that can be kept out of the bone barrel (which you get about 1¢ to 2¢ lb from the rendering company) and put into grinds that are $2.49/$3.99 lb is additional profit. Adding local canner to burger can be deceptive as it's fat is usually yellow, not a bright white, so your see yellow specks in the ground meat making you think someone tossed in some old chickens. Not so, just variance in fat color.
For the best flavor, you want the necks and shanks, the hardest working muscle groups on the animal, as it gives the most flavor by virtue of it's lean, hard-working fibers, not the round. I once had a very nice young couple invite me to a pot roast dinner and knew of my meat background. She went out and bought two of the most beautiful 2" thick porterhouse steaks and boiled them with carrots, onions and potatoes, figuring it would be the best meat. It was like eating notebook paper boiled for 4 hours. A big chunk of neck would have been super instead! Just like boiling shanks for soup; delicious! Porterhouse is best grilled, believe me!
post #6 of 8
Ive never tried smoking burgers. I grill them on my UDS with Hickory wood and usually use 80/20 or 85/15 whatever they have. I stay away from 70/30 because of flareups and 90/10 because they come out dry. Just might have to try low and slow on them soon.
post #7 of 8
My vote is on 80 / 20 as well. I get a juicier burger used that mix than any other. Although, my wife wants me to try some Turkey burgers next. We'll see.
post #8 of 8
I have to admit, I have never smoked a burger either...smoked lots of things, but not a burger! BUT I like the idea and will be trying it. As for the meat, I like 80/20. lately I hava been buying a chuck roast and having my butcher grind it for me...somehow that makes me feel like I know a little more about where its coming from ( and it is alway good!).

I have tried the turkey burgers at my wifes request and they just are not that good to me! What I have found that works good with turkey burgers is to pat them out, pan sear them to get a "crust" on them, then put them in a baking dish with cream of whatever you like and finish them in the oven... sort af a salsbury steak kind of thing...even my 12 yr old daughter who I am SURE is the pickiest eater on the planet likes them!!!
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