Cocktail Recipes, Spirits, and Local Bars

Is This Michigan’s Best Burger?

Is This Michigan’s Best Burger?

According to our ranking, the Redcoat Tavern serves the best burger in Michigan.

The Daily Meal recently published our 101 Best Burgers in America for 2014, and in order to compile our ranking, we assembled a list of nearly 200 burgers from all across the country, from Spruce Pine, North Carolina to Hillsboro, Oregon. We then divided these burgers by region, and compiled a survey that was taken by a panel of 50 noted food writers, journalists, bloggers, and culinary authorities from across the country, asking them to vote for their favorites; limited, of course, to the ones that they’d tried. We tallied the results, and published the 101 stellar American burgers with the most votes.

When a burger hasn’t changed in more than 40 years, you know they’re doing something right. And at the Redcoat Tavern in Royal Oak, Michigan, that burger is a half-pound beauty, served on a traditional sesame seed-topped bun. Add-ons include shredded lettuce, tomato, and toppings of your choice including cheese and “burnt” onions. The restaurant is packed with hungry crowds daily, and just about all the regulars will tell you that the no-frills burger is the best they’ve ever had. Don’t miss the onion rings and clam chowder, too.

The Original Redcoat Special Hamburger snagged the #35 spot in our compilation, beating out the Chapman Burger at Laura's Little Burger Joint in Decatur (#80) and the Double Hamburger ay Hunter House Hamburgers in Birmingham (#96), and so claims the title of the best burger in Michigan.

Kate Kolenda is the Restaurant and City Guide Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @BeefWerky and @theconversant.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Sara Moulton's Det Burgers

My first official cooking job was in the mid-'70s at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan (where I went to college), called the Del Rio. They featured live jazz on weekends. It was a democratic place all decisions were made by common vote and it felt like one big family. The food we cooked was not all that sophisticated: chili, hamburgers, Greek salad, and soups based solidly on jars of soup base, but I got into it and prided myself on my soups in particular (the only item we did not have a formula for).

The most popular dish on the menu was a burger called the "Det" burger, which had been developed in the early '70s by one of the cooks, Bob Detweiler, when one day he got tired of making the same old burger on a bun. He topped the basic burger with what became the "Det" mixture: drained canned mushrooms, drained canned California olives, and reconstituted dried green pepper bits. He covered it with a slice of onion and cheese (his wife, Julie, the manager, suggested the cheese), and here is the most important point: He steamed it in beer! It was really delicious, the sort of burger you dream about.

I have developed my own version here using fresh mushrooms, Mediterranean olives, and canned green chiles to add a little bite. If you have the time, roasted peeled poblanos are even better, but I wasn't sure anyone would go to that trouble on a weeknight. I made the "Det" burgers (with the poblanos) when I did a burger show on Sara's Secrets, and Michael Romano, the chef from New York City's three-star Union Square Café, who joined me to make his famous tuna burgers, insisted on taking the "Det" burger recipe home with him.

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, sliced (about 1 cup)

Eight 1 1/2-inch cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces), sliced

Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

One 4-ounce can sliced, peeled green chiles, drained

1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, sliced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck or round

6 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut into 4 slices

4 hamburger buns, split and toasted

PREPARATION

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until mushrooms have browned and liquid they release has evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Season mushroom mixture with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl add chiles and olives and set aside. Wipe out skillet.

2. Gently shape beef into four 4-inch burgers season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce heat to medium-high, add burgers, and cook 3 minutes. Turn burgers and cook 2 minutes. Divide chile mixture onto them and top each with a slice of cheese. Add beer to skillet cover and steam until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes.


Watch the video: Caramelized Onion Burger recipe #shorts (November 2021).