The Bobby Flay Burger

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Back in 2003, before he was a fast-food impresario, Bobby Flay gave this recipe for a Cubano-style burger to Jonathan Reynolds of The Times. “The best burgers are made on an iron surface and cooked medium, so they’re not too soft and you can get a crust,” he said at the time. “If you press your burger bun like a Cubano, you get crisp on the outside, soft on the inside.” He adorned the patty with two slices of Swiss, smoked ham and pickles, then slipped the package into the bun and pressed it hard on the grill. “We are not ready for micro greens on our national dish,” he said. The result continues to amaze.


  • 1

    pound ground chuck

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 4

    hamburger buns, split

  • ¼

    cup best-quality mayonnaise

  • ¼

    cup Dijon mustard

  • 8

    slices thinly sliced Swiss cheese

  • 4

    slices thinly sliced smoked ham

  • 2

    large dill pickles, sliced lengthwise into 8 slices


    1. Form meat into 4 patties. Season with salt and pepper. Cook in a sauté pan on high until medium rare, 2 to 3 minutes on each side.
    2. Spread mayo and mustard on each bun. Place a slice of cheese on the bottom of the bun. Top with the meat, a slice of ham, another slice of cheese, 2 sliced pickles and the top of the bun.
    3. Cook until cheese has melted on a heated sandwich press or in a large skillet over high heat with a heated heavy skillet placed on top.
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