The Perfect Burger and Other Meats

When it comes to hamburgers, I can be rather picky. I blame these discerning tastes on childhood trauma, of course!

Let me say up front that my mom is a good cook… with most foods, that is. Hamburgers, however, were her biggest culinary challenge. The concept of a flat, juicy, flavorful patty cook to perfection seemed to elude her. Mom’s take on this classic American dish was to take a circular lump of hamburger meat and cook it well past the point of well done. Dad and I used to call them “Beatrice’s Burnt Burger Balls,” though never to her face. (Mom’s name isn’t Beatrice, for one thing, and Dad and I still needed to eat!) In the end, “burger night” at Casa del Buckler continued with this strange, spherical tradition.

If only Mom had the Oregon Scientific AW131 Grill Right Wireless Talking BBQ and Oven Thermometer!

This amazing little device is the friend and favored tool of every backyard burgermeister and BBQ buff. The AW131 takes the guesswork out of cooking burgers and every other type of meat. There are settings for beef, lamb, veal, hamburger, pork, turkey, chicken, and fish. More importantly, there also are selections for how you want the meat done – rare, medium rare, medium, and well done. It even has a voice that tells you when to pull the meat off the grill.

You know what else is great about the AW131? The cook isn’t stuck standing over the grill like some micro-managing mid-level manager. The device has two verbal and three audio alert options to let you know when the meal is almost ready and ready. This means the busy cook can take time to make salads, bake potatoes, or do just about anything else without worrying about overcooking the meat.

Since I grew up in the 1980s, Mom couldn’t have benefited from the Oregon Scientific AW131. Its advanced wireless technology wasn’t available during the Reagan era. Still, if she would’ve had it, Dad and I could’ve enjoyed our favorite medium-rare burgers.

The SW131 still wouldn’t have done much to change the shape of our burgers, though!