06 May2011

A meaty burger with really discernible flavor. Very macho beef. Our version of say Argentinian beef raised and herded by gauchos. The ground sirloin is from downtoearth, part of my purchase last Saturday at the Salcedo market. It comes from totally organic, pasture raised, grass-fed, native or localized cattle from Bukidnon. It looked incredibly lean in its plastic bag, with hardly any bits of creamy fat. But I thought it was definitely worth a try. A few days later, I went into the kitchen and the cook had formed a nice hefty patty with roughly 250 grams of the meat. That’s about half a pound of meat, a half-pounder, as it were. She had already mixed in some chopped onions and tomatoes and a touch of Lea & Perrins so we just decided to cook it as is for a few minutes on each side and I got this large, incredibly appetizing looking and smelling burger for lunch. I piled on three homemade pickle half spears and tasted the burger…

It was fantastic! But really good. Incredible flavor. Still juicy as it was cooked medium-rare. Mrs. Marketman had one without the Lea & Perrins and she too confirms the great flavor. Just don’t eat this cooked beyond medium and gosh, definitely NOT well-done. If I had a nice crusty roll I would have had a near perfect hamburger, but I ate it naked instead. I better get to the market early tomorrow to make sure I can stock up with more ground sirloin! :)



  1. millet says:

    i totally get what you mean by the “macho-ness” of beef. it starts with that big beefy umami smell and extends into robust clean flavor, and all the way to a sense that you’re eating steak, never mind if it’s actually burger, beef stew or tapa. i don’t know how else to describe it.

    May 6, 2011 | 7:57 am


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  3. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    How about incorporating some zubu-tampalen? ;-)

    May 6, 2011 | 8:05 am

  4. Marketman says:

    Artisan, we are toying with the idea of a beef burger, for the non-pork eaters. It makes a superb hamburger. :)

    May 6, 2011 | 8:25 am

  5. christine says:

    Hi MM! would you please share how to make those delicious looking burger patties? I tried making burger patties in the past but I failed miserably.

    May 6, 2011 | 9:10 am

  6. joan says:

    Looking forward to having this as the best burger in Cebu. I see this with the pickled singkamas on the side :)

    May 6, 2011 | 9:36 am

  7. ingrid says:

    hi MM!
    i hope you will do a blind testing, from start to finish :) and really compare the pasture raised grass fed to the commercial ones. So that people will be informed of buying organic products and push suppliers to go organic as well.

    May 6, 2011 | 10:29 am

  8. Mimi says:

    A dollop of creamy horseradish sauce on mine please!

    May 6, 2011 | 11:52 am

  9. Gab says:

    Perhaps adding caramelized onions and some good cheese? :)

    May 6, 2011 | 2:55 pm

  10. Mindanaoan says:

    I’m always in Bukidnon and yet I only found out about DowntoEarth through your blog! Yikes :(

    May 6, 2011 | 3:09 pm

  11. millet says:

    davao’s malagos cheese selection would go very well with that burger!

    May 6, 2011 | 6:32 pm

  12. denise says:

    waaah….what i’d give for some medium cooked steak/burger right now… food where im at is starting to taste the same (mass-produced cafeteria style meals)

    May 6, 2011 | 7:21 pm

  13. MP says:

    Hi MM, did you say it had tomatoes? mixed with the beef patty? maybe they contributed to making the burger juicy?

    May 7, 2011 | 1:44 am

  14. myra_ps says:

    @millet…. MM should hide a chunk of blue cheese INSIDE the pattie…

    May 7, 2011 | 4:06 am

  15. ariel nievera says:

    I miss the greasy half cooked Tropical hut burger..

    May 7, 2011 | 5:22 am

  16. Marketman says:

    ariel nievera, I have to admit, I was a HUGE fan of tropical hut hamburgers when growing up. There was a branch down the road from us when we lived in Quezon City in the 60’s. I think they may have been among the first to include soy sauce and other seasonings with the meat (probably including sugar) that gave it that “pinoy” twist that other larger chains latched onto and made billions on. I used to sit at the tropical hut counter and SAVOR my burger and nibble on the sliced sweet pickle it came with… a total treat for a youngster. I haven’t had one in nearly 40 years, though I note there are still tropical hut groceries still around… myra, definitely with blue cheese or a good cheddar! MP, yes, I am sure the tomatoes helped. But it’s the overcooking that tends to dry out any burger, regardless of meat. millet, good idea, davao cheese with bukidnon beef… ah now… how to ensure supply lines that don’t break down, don’t break down… Gab, yes, caramelized onions would be brilliant.

    May 7, 2011 | 6:15 am

  17. Matt says:

    Beautiful photo can see the quality of the meat in the colours, also love the slightly crispy outside although the juices are still flowing from the meat. Haven’t had anything that good in a while! Bit of a burger lover and often find meat quality is a lot fatter than I would like here sad to say but its good to know quality is on the rise.

    May 7, 2011 | 2:41 pm

  18. quiapo says:

    For a special treat, cook this on the Weber, preferably with moistened hickory chips added to the uling.
    Sometimes I mix chopped sweet pickles in the mix, with a raw egg to bind the mix.

    May 7, 2011 | 6:38 pm

  19. bearhug0127 says:

    @ ariel – i so miss the tropical hut hamburger. i think they were the best during its time. used to get it at tropical hut edsa – across poea now. those were the days. Which reminds me of the spaghetti at unimart. miss the spaghetti, too.

    May 7, 2011 | 7:17 pm

  20. jannah says:

    Hi MM nice to hear that something for non-pork eaters as I dont eat pork myself. But it does not stop me reading your blog…

    May 8, 2011 | 12:34 am

  21. betty q. says:

    Bearhugo and Ariel,

    We lived just a stone’s throw from Tropical Hut in Q.C. I have a cloned recipe of the T.H. burger. Kaya lang it is buried in my Tupperware. I gave the recipe to Ted a long time ago. If you woild like to try it, I can e-mail Ted and ask him to forward it back to me or maybe he can post it if he is following this thread.

    May 8, 2011 | 2:58 am

  22. Marketman says:

    betty q, OMG, you mean we could have been neighbors? Why does that actually not surprise me? :) jannah, lots of non-pork posts in the archives in case you haven’t dug back far enough…

    May 8, 2011 | 6:07 am

  23. Dragon says:

    Hi MM, you did live a few blocks away from betty Q & me. Last time I had Trop burger was in 2007..definitely prefer this over McDo; Jollibee/Burger King would come in second.

    May 8, 2011 | 2:34 pm

  24. betty q. says:

    OMG, too, MM! Wouldn’t that be something!!!

    Dragon, The last time I had T.H. burger was in the early 70’s. Ted made it as soon as I sent him the recipe about a year ago and said it was perfect!

    May 8, 2011 | 3:34 pm

  25. Daisy D. Leano says:

    i love reading your blog MM…this burger looks super yummy…sana you can give the complete recipe…thankss…

    May 11, 2011 | 11:12 am

  26. tonceq says:

    Any do it like I do? sautet the onion and garlic before incorporating them in the patty? :)

    May 11, 2011 | 10:28 pm

  27. tonceq says:

    ooops! sorry! double post! xp

    May 11, 2011 | 10:28 pm

  28. cha says:

    hi betty q, If you don’t mind can i ask for the cloned Trop. Hut recipe? please. I’m here in texas, and quite having a nasty craving for Tropical Hut hamburger.

    Nov 3, 2012 | 6:31 am

  29. Neil says:

    To Betty q,

    I am from Florida and have no access to a tropical hut burger. Can you please email the recipe? I thank you in advance.



    Dec 5, 2012 | 4:03 am


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