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The Science of a Perfect Sear: Exploring the Maillard Reaction in Burgers

Welcome to Burger Science 101!

Today’s lesson is all about the Maillard reaction. The Maillard reaction happens when the protein and sugar from the meat react with one another over high heat, which gives the Burger a seared, brown edge. This chemical and physical reaction is what gives a Burger the perfect sear, and ultimately brings out the best flavors in a Burger. The most important part of getting the Maillard reaction is having the right heat temperature.

Ever wonder why Smashburgers are so great? They are the ultimate illustration of this science because the “smash” itself, the pressing of the meat into the flat top, allows more surface area to get that perfect sear (aka caramelization).  

Getting the perfect sear on a smashburger

The Science Behind the Smashburger 

When a Burger hits the hot, flat surface, amino acids immediately react with sugars. This creates numerous unique flavors (compounds) that are added to the Burger. The outside of the Burger gets crispy and the inside stays tender. In the case of a Smashburger, you want to smash it as soon as it hits the heat to sear it right away and keep in all the juices that help create those flavors. 

 

Make your Smashburgers even easier by buying perfectly portioned 2.5 oz Signature Blend Sliders from Schweid & Sons. Or if you’re looking for a thicker Burger, try 5.3oz The Butcher’s Blend

 

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