The Burger Wars have become the biggest food fight since that cafeteria scene from the movie Animal House. The two burger giants, McDonald's and Burger King, have each been cloning the other's top product in the bloody battle for the big burger buck. Burger King stepped up first with the Big King—Burger King's version of McDonald's Big Mac. Yes, it had two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun; although everything was arranged a bit differently, and there's no middle bun in there. Then McDonald's rolled out the Big 'N Tasty, which bore a striking resemblance to Burger King's Whopper, with fresh lettuce, tomato, and onion on top of a huge beef patty. Who's winning this fight by leveraging the popularity of the other company's product? Nobody, really. McDonald's chose to alter its Big 'N Tasty recipe by making it smaller 'n cheaper; then changed the name to BigXtra!, while Burger King limited the sale of the Big King and then took it off the menu.
But this food fight is far from over. More recently, Burger King tweaked its French fry formula in an unsuccessful attempt to steal away fans of McDonald's winning fried spuds recipe. And McDonald's has added more breakfast sandwiches to compete with Burger King's wide wake up selection. So the war continues. And the battlefield is splattered with ketchup.
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
- Pinch salt
- Pinch ground black pepper
- 4 sesame seed hamburger buns
- 1 1/3 cups chopped iceberg lettuce
- 8 slices American cheese
- 1 to 2 slices white onion, separated
- 8 dill pickle slices
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons French dressing
- 2 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon paprika
1. Prepare the spread by combining the ingredients in a small bowl. Set this aside until you are ready to use it.
2. Preheat your barbecue or indoor grill to high heat.
3. Divide the ground beef into eight even portions (3 ounces each). Roll each portion into a ball, then press each ball flat to form a patty about the same diameter as the bun.
4. Grill the beef patties for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until done. Lightly salt and pepper each side of the patties.
5. As the meat cooks, brown the faces of the buns in a hot skillet, toaster oven, or face down on the grill. Watch the buns closely so that they don't burn.
6. Build each burger by first spreading a tablespoon of the spread on the face of the top bun. Arrange about 1/3 cup of lettuce evenly over the spread.
7. On the bottom bun stack a patty, then a slice of American cheese, another patty, and another slice of cheese.
8. On the top slice of cheese, arrange 2 to 3 separated onion slices (rings), then 2 pickle slices.
9. Turn the top part of the burger over onto the bottom and serve. You may also want to zap the sandwiches in the microwave, individually, for 15 to 20 seconds each.
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