How can someone resist a burger that comes with a warning disclaimer? That was exactly our predicament a little over two years ago and we soon found our burger world rocked.
In the middle of a whirlwind trip we found ourselves in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, affectionately dubbed the twin cites. We were one set of the speakers on slate for the Creative Connection, which in a twist of fate was perfect timing to meet up with the lovely, talented, and ever so sweet Zoe of Zoe Bakes to film her and the charismatic Jeff Hertzberg for their Pizza in 5 cookbook promo. And as an added bonus, Gina of TheShabbyChicCottage.com told us about an amazing event, Junk Bonanza which in another twist of fate happened to be going on in that same 3 day window. Holy cow this was a luck permeated trip.
And amidst all this loveliness, someone told us we needed to try a Juicy Lucy, or Jucy Lucy, depending on who is serving it. “A what?!?” was our immediate reaction.
It was described as the twin cities culinary claim to fame. A burger which has the cheese stuffed inside of then then cooked up, encompassing a molten lava of melted cheese. When you first bite into the juicy patty, the deliciousness of the inner melted cheese siren calls you past the fear of fuzzy tongue and you plunge head first into a great, oozy, juicy burger.
Um, hell yeah.
Obviously, or else we wouldn’t be telling this story, we hunted down one of best spots to try them, waited in line, got a seat, and upon eating were rocked by the Juicy Lucy. I’ve dreamt about this burger since then. Yet some how in a fit of early brain degeneration, we didn’t ever think of making them at home. One thought comes to mind, “well that was stupid.”
These are only one of the most amazing ways to have a burger. So this grilling season, the reminiscence of the Juicy Lucy has sprung to mind and we’ve gotten wiser in our old age. Juicy Lucy’s are now blessing our grills and finding their way to our friends and families buns.
I must say, they are even better than what we remember. Maybe it is because we are using our umami burger recipe as the base for the patties, or maybe it is just the magic of friends, family and the garden. Either way, the burgers were a hit with everyone at the table for our Juicy Lucy party. For some, it was hard to just eat one burger and after the second one, we had to coax everyone to get out of their chairz and walk a few rounds around the garden to aid in digestion. The brisk walks helped, a little.
It was awesome to see at the party everyone’s excitement over the fact that there’s melted cheese in the middle of the burger. Biting into a fat burger that’s oozing with hidden, melted cheese, that’s exciting. The calorie and carb count on these burgers didn’t see to phase anyone from eating their second burger. When you get together a group of people who are excited about food, particularly burgers, there’s just no end to the fun conversations throughout the night.
The juicy lucy party was a hit and it’s not going to be our last. With Summer on the cusp, burger parties like these are a staple to the warm weather. That’s what Summer is all about: bbq, burgers, beer and lots of great friends to devour it all with.
Step-by-Step Photo for Juicy Lucy Burger Recipe
start by making your base patties
Ball ‘em, make a well, fill ‘em, and don’t forget the lids. Lower photo has lids balled on the right and flattened on the left.
here’s a visual for the 3 main steps
lay the cap on…
finish seal …
re-shape the burger patty to a pretty round shape and flatten a bit
ready for the grill
cooked to perfection
Juicy Lucy Burger Recipe - with an Umami Burger Base
Yield: 12 Burgers
Total Time: 20 min
Warning, the cheese will be like molten lava just after the burgers have finished cooking. Eat with caution.
- 4 lbs (1.8 kg) ground Beef
- 3 Tablespoons (45ml) Fish Sauce
- 4 cloves Garlic, crushed
- fresh cracked Black Pepper, to taste
- 1 teaspoon (5g) Sugar
- 1/2 lb (225g) Aged Cheddar Cheese, grated (traditional it is made with American cheese)
- 12 Hamburger Buns
- condiments of choice
- Combine the ground beef, fish sauce, garlic, pepper, and sugar in a bowl. Mix together well.
- Roll the beef into 12 larger balls (about 2/3 a tennis ball size) and 12 smaller balls (about the size of a ping pong ball). Make a well into the large balls, spreading the patty to your desired width as you make the indention.
- Fill the wells in the patties with the grated cheese. Flatten the smaller meat balls making them into a lid. Place the lids on the cheese filled patties and pinch the seams closed. Gently press flat, double checking there are no opening for the cheese to escape when the burgers cook.
- Cook on a grill or skillet over medium high heat (usually about 3 minutes per side). Toast the buns and serve with your desired condiments.