Sometimes, on a winter’s day, with the patio covered in snow. . . you just may want a July-flavored burger that tastes like it came from the grill. I found a recipe for indoor burgers that uses liquid smoke to provide the grill taste; it also calls for MSG to buttress that taste. My junk-food deflector shield was at full mast, but, I must admit, I was intrigued enough to give the thing a try. And I gotta further admit: from the moment a grill-like smell pervaded my kitchen, I liked it. I really liked it. . .
1. Place a ridged grill pan over the highest heat on your range, and let it smolder for a few minutes.
2. While it’s smoldering, mix together 1 1/4 lbs. of ground beef, 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon MSG. Shape into four classic burger patties.
3. Brush ridged grill pan with a little oil, or beef fat. Place burgers right on the smoking pan. Cook until rare to medium-rare. Serve with any condiments you wish.
Yields 4 classic burgers.