Lately, it seems it’s not good enough to have a good ‘ole charbroil going on, it’s a world of burger boutiques where garlic aiolis battle it out with caprese relishes and cilantro-infused mayos. Where emu, elk, lamb and bison burgers big-up the oldschool beef burger. My family loves a good burger, we’re connoisseurs, really, and love checking out the big new burger joints. So when my brother started taunting my husband that he’d found the Best Burger Ever, this was nothing to be taken lightly. My brother insisted we didn’t know from burgers until we’d tried The Burger Barn.
This past weekend we made our way out to Port Dover – a beachfront community on the shore of Lake Erie in Norfolk County, about 2 hours west of Toronto. We like long drives and beaches, so combining this with the quest for the Best Burger Ever seemed like a no-brainer.
My brother was right. We found the Best Burger Ever. Located on 4th Line, just off of Highway 6 in Ohsweken, there is, in fact, a building that looks like a big barn, and it is, in fact, The Burger Barn, and they do, in fact, have the Best Burger Ever. We ordered a few variations – one with brie, mushrooms, bacon and caramelized onions; one with dusted jalapeños, barbecue sauce and Monterey Jack, one with cheese, and one with nuthin’ but the bun – our 8 year old is a purist. The onion rings and the fries are spectacular sides. The bun – that bun… It is standout! Definitely worth the drive.
While we can’t make regular trips to The Burger Barn, the fact is, I make a mean burger. I really do. I may not have all of the crazy toppings, but it holds its own among boutique burgers. We barbecue everything – and we barbecue all year long – and this one’s a staple. Feel free to get fancy with the toppings!
What you need:
-2-3 pounds lean ground beef (regular is more tasty, extra-lean is a bit dry)
– 2 tablespoons salt
– 2 to 3 tablespoons garlic powder
– 2 teaspoons paprika
– 1 egg
– cracked pepper to taste
– burger buns
What you do:
Pre-heat the barbecue. In a large mixing bowl, mix all ingredients. Get in there with your hands and really mush that meat up. Take your mix out to the barbecue and form round patties, about a half-inch thick and about an inch wider than your buns. The actual size doesn’t matter, but it’s always nice to eat a burger that doesn’t get lost inside a big bun. Patties will shrink down a bit during cooking.
Start grilling. At the 4-minute mark give them a quarter turn. After 4 more minutes, flip and repeat. Those grill marks make you look pro, but the turn helps for even cooking. For bigger burgers you may want to go 10 minutes a side, for smaller burgers it will be 5 minutes a side. You don’t want to undercook ground beef, but you’ll have to tweak the recipe if you prefer your burgers medium or well-done.
Now for the toppings:
TexMex: Guacamole, salsa, cheese and jalapeños
French: Brie and dijon
Banquet: Bacon and cheddar
The Philly: A mix of sauteed mushrooms, onions and green peppers, smothered in cheese
The All-Canadian: Peameal bacon, cheddar and maple-glazed barbecue sauce
The Hellfire: Jalapeño havarti, tabasco mayo, hot peppers and peppercorn crusted bacon
Share your creations with us!