Monday, December 20, 2010

The Best Burger Buns

Back in the mid to late 1990s - long before Atkins and damning evidence about carbs - Jack in the Box had a terrific ad campaign featuring a panel of the meat and cheese obsessed to taste-test a new cheeseburger. One panelist questioned the need for the bun with the brilliant observation, "Bun's not meat nor cheese." Jack replied, incredulously, that if there were no bun consumers would have meat and cheese all over their hands. The obsessed panelists saw nothing wrong with that scenario.  Little did they know how prescient they were.

I'm no carbophobe but I do try to make all my calories count. Burger buns are tricky. They are absolutely critical to fully enjoy the physical act of eating a burger but most grocery store options are a total waste of calories.  The Wonder bread varieties are unacceptable. The healthy but dense Rudi's have it all wrong. The in-store bakery at Whole Foods turns out some decent sesame topped burger buns but only produces them seasonally. They taste just fine but are so tall that I end up slicing about an inch out of the inside to make the bun a reasonable size.

So it was a truly pleasant surprise when I discovered a skinny whole wheat burger bun that tasted good and held up under the weight of a lamb burger and all its fixins (tomato, red onion, and crumbled feta).  I picked up a package of International Fabulous Flats (the 100% Whole Wheat Slim Buns) and was beyond impressed by the flavor, texture and size. They are my new go to bun. The company is based in Toronto. I bought the package at my local Whole Foods.

One more thing. Serving sliders or smaller burgers for kids? Use a smooth-edged biscuit cutter to make buns match the size of burgers. I've seen slider buns, but they appear to be too tall, ruining the burger-bun ratio.

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