Burgers With An Ethnic Theme

Tired of the same old ground beef burger on a bun? Then give it ethnic flair with these inventive tips for adding global flavor to your burgers.

Ethnic Burgers

Tips for making ethnic burgers

Burger tip #1: Choose the best meat

Regardless of the type of burger you make, you want to use the best ground meat. Ground chuck, a relatively inexpensive cut, is usually the best option for hamburger patties because it has between 15 and 20 percent fat, just enough to make the burger juicy but not fatty. Ground round and ground sirloin are typically too lean, but can make juicy burgers if cooked to medium or less. Meat labeled "ground beef" is usually a combination of sirloin, chuck, filet, or any other cut of beef. Ground beef, typically the cheapest choice, usually has 30 percent fat unless otherwise noted on the label, and will make juicy burgers that tend to be a little fatty tasting.

Burger tip #2: Try different meats

Combining a few cuts of one type of meat together will make for delicious and flavorful burgers. But combining different types of meat, such as mixing ground lamb or pork with beef, will make for interesting combinations that give your burgers a tasty edge. You can also use meats that fit with your ethnic theme. For example, ground lamb for Greek-style burgers or ground pork or duck for Asian-style burgers.

Burger tip #3: Add ethnic ingredients

To give your burgers a true international flavor, add a few herbs, spices, or even vegetables or dressings that are prominent in a particular cuisine. Make an Asian-style burger by including soy sauce and wasabi in the meat, or make an Italian-style burger by mixing in chopped basil and sun-dried tomatoes.

Burger tip #4: Don't forget the toppings

The right toppings will add an extra dimension of global flavor to your burger. Instead of plain lettuce and tomato, stay with your ethnic theme and top your French-style burger with melted Brie or top your Italian burger with thin slices of prosciutto. You can also get creative with spreads and make a wasabi mayonnaise for your Asian burger or a feta and olive paste for your Greek burger.

Burger tip #5: Try a different type of "bun"

Instead of regular hamburger buns, use a bread that goes with the type of ethnic burger you are making. Enclose your Mexican-style burger in a soft tortilla, nestle your Greek burger in a pita, and serve your French burger on crispy French bread.

Simply peruse various cuisines to determine the type of ingredients that will add ethnic flair to your usual burgers and, most important, be adventurous with your burger making.

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