Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Crave Wednesday: Cast Iron Burgers

Happy Belated Labor Day!  Did you enjoy it?  Spend time with friends and family?  Did you barbecue? (That's a Labor Day tradition, right?)  We celebrated Labor Day on Sunday, spending the afternoon at the beach and then heading to a party at The Pirates' house.  It was not a barbecue.  Instead we feasted on delicious Greek feast with falfel, spanikopita, gyro meat, and souvlaki.

On Monday, we did "labors" around the house before I headed out for a run with the girls.  In 90 degree heat.  On days like that, the idea of standing outside at the grill, is not entirely appealing.  But what's a girl to do when you want a burger?  Burgers just aren't the same when they're made inside.  Or are they?

I remember having this very discussion on a cooking forum on which I used to participate.  How do you make hamburgers inside?  I've already professed my love for the grill pan, but you can get a gorgeous char using a cast iron pan.  The super hot pan cooks the outside of the meat quickly without turning it into a flavorless mush like some other pans might. 

This is definitely a "grownup burger" with a spicy relish of horseradish and dijon mustard.  I served this sans relish for Thatkid, and sans onions since that day he decided he didn't like them.  He also decided he didn't like eating burgers the way God intended, first eating the bacon, then the top bun, then the tomato, and only begrudgingly the patty itself, once I cut it up into pieces.  My kid is weird.

Cast-Iron Burgers (From Cooking Light)
1 lb ground sirloin
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp mayonnaise
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp horseradish
2 tsp ketchup
2 applewood-smoked bacon slices, chopped
3 cups vertically sliced yellow onions
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh chives
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp ground pepper
4 hamburger buns
4 slices tomato
  1. To prepare patties, divide beef into 4 equal portions, lightly shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty.  Press thumb in center of each patty, leaving a nickle-sized indentation.  
  2. Sprinkle evenly with salt.  Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes.
  3. To prepare horseradish spread, combine mayonnaise and next 3 ingredients (through ketchup) in a small bowl.  Set aside.
  4. To prepare relish, cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan with a slotted spoon.
  5. Add onion to drippings in pan; cook 15 minutes or until golden brown.  
  6. Combine bacon, onion mixture, chives, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper in a small bowl.
  7. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add patties; cook 2 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.
  8. Spread 1 1/2 tsps horseradish spread on cut side of each bun half.  
  9. Top bottom half of each bun for 1 patty, 1 tomato slice, and 1/4 cup relish.  Cover with bun tops.


  1. I never knew you could make burgers this way! I wonder if I could use cast-iron to get a grill like char on veggies too.

  2. Here in Canada we ar supposed to BBQ even in the dead of winter, but I more likely see myself "grilling" them in a cast iron pan on the kitchen stove :-)