Let’s take some time to appreciate one of the things that makes living in America great: the cheeseburger. September 18th is National Cheeseburger Day! Seems like a good excuse to eat a grass-fed cheeseburger and learn a bit more about the history of the cheeseburger.
1200: Mongol horseman stash raw meat under their saddles during their conquests. After a long day of pillaging the meat would transform into patties tender enough to eat. Through their travels, word of the tender meat patties reaches Hamburg, Germany where it gets the name, Hamburg Steak.
1747: An English cookbook publishes a recipe for hamburg sausage. The recipe calls for minced beef seasoned with suet, pepper, cloves, nutmeg, garlic, wine vinegar, bay salt, red wine and rum, smoked for a week in a chimney.
1802: The Oxford English Dictionary defines the hamburg steak as a “hard slab of salted, minced beef, slightly smoked, mixed with onions and bread crumbs.”
1873: The hamburg steak appears on the first printed menu at Delmonico’s in New York.
1900: Louis Lassen creates a hamburg steak sandwich at his restaurant in New Haven. The sandwich consists of ground beef trimmings made into a patty, grilled, and placed between two pieces of toast.
1916: Short-order cook, Walter Anderson invents a bun specifically for hamburgers. His invention is so successful that he founds the first hamburger chain, “White Castle.”
1924: At the age of 16, Lionel Sternberger puts a slice of American cheese on a cooking hamburger at his father’s sandwich shop in California. It was a hit and they added it to the menu calling it a cheese hamburger.
1934: Charles Kaelin claims to invent the cheeseburger at his restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky stating he wanted to “add a new tang to the hamburger.”
1935: Louis Ballast, owner of Humpty Dumpty Barrel Drive-In in Denver files a patent for the cheeseburger. Despite all other claims of inventing the cheeseburger, Louis holds the patent and is considered to its lawful creator.
We don’t care who invented them, or where they originated, we’re just glad they exist. Whether you top ‘em with pickles, onion rings, bacon or even an egg, make sure your beef is 100% grass-fed and grass-finished! On September 18th, let’s all raise a cheeseburger in celebration of a truly great American holiday, National Cheeseburger Day.