If there is one thing us Brits love in the summer, it’s a good old-fashioned BBQ. Sometimes we go a bit overboard – recently I went to a BBQ where we tucked into pulled pork and chicken, koftas, sausages, burgers, mac n cheese, beans and of course the obligatory salad.
So when I saw that M&S were claiming to have made their Best Ever Burger, I was desperate to put it to the test.
Following an event with M&S a few weeks ago, I began working with them to recreate some tasty summer recipes.
I’ve tried their salads and intend on giving their puddings a go, but for now, let’s talk burgers.
Hampshire’s Best Ever Burger
To celebrate the creation of Marks and Spencer’s best ever burger, they asked Masterchef 2016 winner Jane Devonshire to create her Best Ever Hampshire Burger, using local ingredients.
When asked about how she created the burger, Jane said “I’m a huge advocate for using local produce in dishes and my recipe is a true combination of some of the best seasonal ingredients from the south coast. Seafood was a must, so I created a surf and turf burger with a layer of shrimp and crayfish tails. The rosti and Hampshire watercress provide crunch, with a fried egg to top it off.”
Of course, what good is great local ingredients if the burger itself isn’t ‘the best’? Kirsty Adams, M&S’s Beef Product Developer (yep, that’s a job) was one of the creators behind this burger, she explained that “the burger is having a serious moment and we wanted to celebrate just how diverse and delicious it can be by partnering with some amazing chefs”
The burger took over a year to develop and has gone on to be the fastest selling summer product for the company. So how good is it?
But how good is it?
There are a few criteria, I feel that a burger must meet to be claimed as ‘the best’.
These are taste, texture and thickness.
This was incredibly succulent and juicy. I like my burgers cooked medium and not too pink in the middle. I fried it due to having a rubbish grill, but this didn’t affect the overall burger taste. It didn’t ooze with grease but was still juicy in the centre. It held it’s shape well and remained thick throughout cooking.
The toppings can make or break a burger.
To recreate the Hampshire Burger you will be adding a watercress mayo to your bun base, topped the burger with a potato and prawn (or alternative seafood) rosti then finishing it with a fried egg.
The rosti was the only part I found difficult to make. There is no binding agent as you are meant to shape it int he pan, I found this very difficult and I couldn’t flip it without it all falling apart.
This didn’t ruin the dish or the taste, but it did mean that when I make it again I will be using an egg to bind the rosti mix.
Make it yourself – Best Ever Surf and Turk Rosti-Burger by Jane Devonshire
Serves 4 Ready in 30 minutes
- 4 M&S Best Ever Burgers
- 375g Charlotte potatoes
- 200g M&S Madagascan prawns (the original recipe stated to use 100g crayfish tails and 100g shrimp, but prawns work well as an alternative)
- 25g Butter
- 80g Watercress
- 125g Mayonnaise
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Splash of rapeseed oil
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- 4 free range eggs
- 4 burger buns
- Pinch of sea salt
Grate the potatoes and squeeze as much water as you can out using kitchen roll or a tea towel until the potato is quite dry. Place in a bowl.
Chop the prawns into small pieces and combine with potato. Season well with sea salt and black pepper – set the rosti mix aside
Place the burgers onto the grill and cook according to packet instructions
Heat a frying pan with the butter and oil, until the butter is frothy but not spitting. Split the rosti mixture into 4 equal portions and drop them into the frying pan. Using your spatula, shape until they are roughly the size of the burger buns and similar thickness.
Gently fry the rosti until a deep golden brown then using a spatula, carefully turn over and repeat the process until you have 4 crispy potato cakes.
Make the watercress mayonnaise by blitzing in a blender 40g of the watercress with 125g of the mayonnaise and a splash of lemon juice. (Finely chop and mix if no blender)
Fry the eggs to your preference, lightly toast the burger buns, spread watercress mayo over the bottom half of the burger bun and add a sprig of fresh watercress
Place the burger on top, followed by the rosti, the fried egg and the bun top. Enjoy!