We LOVE the 50 nifty United States of this awesome country and believe each state is special. Every Monday we feature a sandwich unique to its state as part of our “50 Sandwiches, 50 States, 50 Weeks” series beginning with Alabama and ending with Wyoming.
One of the most gratifying things for me in our quest to spotlight a sandwich from each of the 50 states every week is that I learn something new about the little intricacies that make up the fabric of our nation. When I set out to determine what type of sandwich the great state of Connecticut claims as its own, I have to admit that I was surprised ( and delighted ) to learn that the city of New Haven, and more specifically, a restaurant called Louis’ Lunch, stakes claim to providing America with the very first hamburger sandwich!
Okay. So you’re thinking, it’s a hamburger, why the excitement? The traditional Louis’ Lunch hamburger sandwich is a proprietary blend of 5 cuts of beef. Let’s start there. Most places use chuck, if they want to kick it up a notch they use sirloin, if they are using filet, well, I can’t afford that type of burger! 5 cuts….I love it!
As I’m reading this info, all I can think about is going down to my favorite meat counter at Chanatry’s Market and picking out the meat I’m going to use to try and replicate this burger. Jenn was upstairs and I shouted out “I found this week’s sandwich!!” with such happiness that she thought something was wrong. Think about it….I get to go to the meat market, pick out my cuts, grind it up with my Kitchen Aid mixer at home, season it…….and……fire up the grill. Enough said.
So back to the sandwich. Louis’ Lunch sounds very similar to Joe’s here in Utica: you get what you get, the way we do it, period. I love that swagger coming from a legendary corner establishment; they’ve earned it! This burger is served up on toasted white bread with lettuce, tomato and onion. Cheese and mustard are acceptable additions and that’s it. Don’t ask for anything else.
So here’s to Connecticut and honoring the birthplace of the hamburger sandwich. I hope I did it justice.
- ½ pound each ground beef : chuck, rib eye, top round, bottom round, boneless spare ribs.
- 16 slices hearty white bread
- Salt and pepper
- Cheese of your choice
- Grind meat and mix together
- Form 6 thick patties and season each side with salt and pepper
- Butter one side of each slice of bread and toast in a skillet on medium heat or on a griddle until golden brown. Set aside.
- Fire up the grill and cook each patty for 4 minutes per side for medium. If adding cheese, place a slice on each patty after you turn them and have cooked for 2 minutes.
- Place on bread and add garnish