The hamburger. Subject both to continual reinvention and fierce advocacy for reversion to the classic. Fancy or standard, the average American eats about 150 hamburgers per year. Yes, as in almost every other day.
You can find hamburgers made from pork, venison, mock-meat, and candy; make them at home lovingly and individually by hand; and at certain fast food establishments, consistently receive a burger exactly the same as you’ve been eating since you were a small child. You can even officially BE a “Hamburger” (but you’d have to be from Hamburg, Germany).
Other burger points of note:
-Whitecastle came before McDonald’s by almost 20 years.
-American history of the burger is in dispute. Birthplaces are claimed in New Haven, Connecticut (at Louis’ Lunch); Athens, Texas; Seymour, Wisconsin, where a teenager began making sandwiches out of meatballs; and Tulsa, Oklahoma, where they claim they were first to slap that sucker on a bun.
-You can thank the invention of the meatchopper for the existence of hamburgers (1829).
-Burger purists and innovators frequently find themselves in near-violent standoffs. Some believe burger patties should boast only one ingredient, beefy goodness; others are all about the add-ons, like foie gras, truffle, and exotic cheese.
Craving a juicy, melty-cheese topped patty of happiness between a soft, lightly toasted bun yet? Here are some burger deals around the country running right now:
–50% off at Burger House in Union Square, NYC,
–Half-off at Arlington Rooftop Bar & Grill just outside Washington, D.C.,
–60% off gourmet burgers in Minneapolis at B52 Burger & Brew, and
–$5 for $12 at LA Burgers in Irving, Texas.