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I’ll Have the Salad Sandwich

Antipasto Salad Sandwich

“I’ll have the salad,” feels so good to say. But whenever I do, I quietly wonder if the growling of my stomach will outpace my crunching. When meeting a friend for lunch, or going out to dinner with my amazingly svelte mother-in-law, salad seems inevitable. When sitting around a table in the summer dusk, a dinner salad is the world’s most perfect thing; an ode to what’s fresh where you are, an invitation to use a single plate, a reason to eat more raw vegetables than one otherwise might. To linger over such a salad feels like the good life.

Not so if I am in a rush, or urgently hungry, or both which happens many a weekday lunch.

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Burger Season Is Here

Classic Burger Recipe

Simply put, I love burgers. The promise of a grilled burger compels me to accept invitations to the cookouts of friends who live in distant, inconvenient locations. I check out the burgers on menus wherever I go.  My devotion springs mostly from an attraction to their basic deliciousness, but I also appreciate how much a burger says about the person who made it. They’re adaptable and agreeable, inviting anyone who wants to engage with them to dress them up. Burger season is a celebration of individual taste.

So, when the season approached, I invited food people Ian Knauer (recipe developer) and Sarah Copeland (photographer) to the kitchen. We set out to make ten great burgers. We were not searching for perfection, but instead were seeking the characteristics that make a burger something to love. We wanted to press the boundaries of what a good burger could be. In the process, we stumbled on a few tenets of burger deliciousness over and over. These helped us better understand the obsession in order to tailor it, expand it, refine it, or okay, sometimes to perfect it.

Here is what we kept talking about:

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