There's something I haven't told you guys. It's not that I've been intentionally holding this little factoid back, it's just that it hasn't come up in our conversations. Okay, here goes: When I was younger, from the ages of 16 to 22, I was a waitress. Probably not earth-shattering news in and of itself, but the place I waitressed? It was the Waffle House. And let me tell you, I really loved that job.
Waffle House Burgers
One of the things I loved about it -- aside from the (mostly) positive interaction with people -- was the food. I probably gained more weight during those six years than at any other point in my life, and I think I can include my first pregnancy in that estimate! As employees, we could eat almost everything on the menu for free, and the burger I'm sharing with you today was one of my favorite things to eat during my shifts.
True to the Waffle House's reputation, this burger is not in the least bit healthy. It's buttery and greasy and represents pretty much everything in the world that's bad for you. But it's so delicious that I find it hard to care.
Aside from when I'm grilling, this is the only burger I make using pre-shaped burger patties. I get beautiful ground chuck patties from our local butcher, and they're perfect for this burger. The bottom line is, this one is so good that it doesn't actually need anything in it to make it taste better. Every bite is a little taste of nostalgia for me, taking me back to my first job, when things were simpler and all I had to worry about was the next tip I'd be stuffing in my apron.
Waffle House Burgers
4 pre-shaped ground chuck patties
Salt and pepper
Vegetable oil and butter
1 large onion, thinly sliced
4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
4 slices tomato
Thousand Island salad dressing
4 hamburger buns, split, buttered, and grilled
1. In a small saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add onion and salt and pepper to taste and cook until onions begin to caramelize.
2. Meanwhile, melt vegetable oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet. Season burger patties with salt and pepper on both sides. Cook to desired doneness. Top each patty with 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce, then top with cheese to melt.
3. Assemble burgers by placing a slice of salted tomato, the caramelized onions, and the Thousand Island dressing on top of each patty.