There is nothing like a big, juicy burger. I never buy pre-made ground beef patties; I always get freshly-made burger from Caronna's Market (my local butcher shop) which is ground right there in the store - often while I wait. A big hand-formed patty of that beef, grilled under a broiler or, better yet, over hot coals, is truly awesome.
But sometimes, I don't want a big juicy burger. I want a thinner, 1930's-style fried patty. I call 'em flatburgers.
I start out by using a cheap teflon-coated egg ring as a burger form. It's completely useless as an egg ring because it's been made with a deep seam where the egg sticks. But it makes a nearly perfect 1/3-pound ground beef patty just the right size to fit on a standard hamburger bun. I press the meat into the ring on a disposable foam plate and carefully remove the ring.
To make this patty into a flatburger, I press the patty gently with my fingertips, forming it into a thinner quarter-inch-thick patty with a wider diameter. Then I fry it under a cast-iron bacon press to keep it from shrinking as it cooks, and serve it up with ketchup and mustard and a slice of cheese on an oversized sesame-seed sandwich bun. Voilà! A flatburger - remarkably similar to the burgers my great-grandfather used to get at small diners in the late 30s. Despite the thinness of the patty, it's still a 1/3-pound burger, so it's remarkably satisfying
Take a trip back in time and try a flatburger sometime.