This makes for a great lunch. They are fantastic! It’s pretty easy to make, and it tastes as good as anything you’ll get in a restaurant. As much as I tend to rag about it, this is another recipe from Bon Appetit magazine, hence it’s a “BA” patty melt.
You can even form the patties up to 8 hours ahead of time, making them even more convenient to make.
One word of warning: these are in absolutely no way a low-fat meal, but well worth every savory, greasy calorie.
Note that this recipe makes four sandwiches.
And, hey: wear a &^%*@! mask when you’re out in public, there’s a pandemic raging throughout the world.
What you’ll need (for 4 sandwiches)
- 2T vegetable oil
- 2 large onions, thinly sliced
- 0.25 of a small onion, finely chopped/minced
- 1 pound ground beef (20% fat)
- 1T ketchup
- 0.5t garlic powder
- 1t kosher salt
- 0.25t ground black pepper
- 1T more of vegetable oil
- 8 slices seeded rye (or similar) bread, a little thicker sliced, if possible
- 4 ounces aged sharp cheddar, thinly sliced—I accidentally omitted this, and the melts were still great
- 4 ounces Swiss cheese, thinly sliced
- About 8t mayonnaise—enough to cover 8 slices of bread.
What to do:
To caramelize the two large, sliced onions, heat 2T oil in a large frypan and gently cook them, stirring/turning often. If they begin to get dry, add a bit of water, as needed. Depending on the level of heat, good onion caramelization can take between 30 and 90 minutes. Do whatever works best for you, but don’t rush these, they’re a key component of the patty melt, and they need to turn out right.
For the patties, gently mix the minced onion, beef, ketchup, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Divide the mixture into 4 portions and press each between 2 pieces of parchment or waxed paper until about a quarter-inch thick. Try to make them a little larger in circumference than the pieces of bread you’re using—the meat will shrink as it cooks.
Heat the additional tablespoon of oil in a large frypan, preferably cast iron, over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, cook the patties, pressing gently, until browned but still pink in the center. Transfer to a plate when they’re finished.
Now wipe out that skillet—careful, it’s hot!—and reduce the heat to medium. Again, if you’re making 4 sandwiches, you’ll have to make them in 2 batches of 2. Top 4 slices of bread with the cheddar slices, then the beef patties, caramelized onions, and Swiss cheese. Put the top bread slices on.
Spread about a teaspoon of mayo on each top, and carefully flip each sandwich over as you place it mayo-side down in the frypan. I didn’t do this, but you could weigh the sandwiches down by leaving another frypan, smaller in diameter than the frypan you’re cooking in, on the sandwiches while cooking.
After the bottom bread is golden brown—about 3 minutes, depending on the frypan temperature—remove the top frypan-weight (if using) and spread mayo on the non-mayo-ed bread. Now flip them over and put the frypan-weight back on. Cook the other side until the cheese is fully melted and the bread toasted—about another 3 or so minutes. If making two more, put the done sandwiches in a 180-degree oven on a wire rack to keep them warm and non-soggy.
These are so good you’ll want them for lunch every day.