I almost fell over when I came across this recipe on Tasty Kitchen. Submitted by AlishaGibb, the recipe’s from an old (and still open!) haunt in my hometown called Murphy’s.
I can’t even begin to adequately summarize what it is about Murphy’s that’s so wonderful. The burgers…the garlic salad dressing (I have that recipe, too)…the incredibly delicious French fries. A meal at Murphy’s is a treat, a splurge (calorically speaking), an unparalleled burger experience. Anyone who’s ever eaten there knows exactly what I mean. Kids come home from college? They go straight to Murphy’s. Adults come to town to visit their parents for Christmas? They pick up Murphy’s to go on the first night they’re there. Murphy’s is simply a part of the soul of anyone who grew up there.
The most famous item on the Murphy’s menu has to be their Hot Hamburger. I…I…I can’t even describe it. And I won’t even try. Instead, I’ll just show you.
Before I begin, just remember one thing: “Gravy Over All“.
We’ll revisit that in a minute.
Thank you, Alisha, for sharing this!
Here’s what you need. I didn’t have any beef broth, so I did beef bouillon cubes in hot water.
First thing we’re gonna do is make some fries, baby.
I have this lovely little french fry cutter. It’s a miracle, and it gets fries into my mouth much faster than if I have to slice them by hand.
These are about the thickness of fries at Murphy’s, if I remember correctly.
Drizzle some canola oil all over the fries and toss them around with your hands.
Then sprinkle on some salt or seasoned salt. I used Slap Ya Mama Cajun seasoning.
Slap Ya Mama on fries is so, so good.
Now pop the pan into a 425 degree oven and bake for 45 minutes, shaking them around a few times here and there so they don’t totally stick to the pan.
When the fries have about 15 minutes left, mix the hamburger meat with minced garlic, onion powder, and seasoned salt (or just plain salt would be fine.) Note: I went a little heavy on the garlic for this one pound of meat. If you’re unsure, cut the seasonings by half.
Use your hands to knead the meat mixture together until it’s thoroughly combined.
Divide the meat into fourths, then make the hamburgers. But Murphy’s doesn’t have lovely, uniform patties.
They just slap a wad of meat on the grill and flatten it into a rustic shape. At least I think that’s how they do it.
Either way, these are not perfectly formed patties. Imperfection is the way to go.
Cook the burgers on both sides until done…
Then remove them to a paper towel-lined plate. Cover them with another plate to keep warm!
There should be plenty of grease in the pan, but if not, feel free to splash in a little oil. Turn the heat to medium-low.
Sprinkle on 4 to 5 tablespoons flour, whisking as you sprinkle it in to make sure the flour evenly distributes in the grease.
Whisk it all together until combined. Ideally, you would cook this roux for a good 3 to 5 minutes in order to get the color as dark as possible without burning. (Murphy’s gravy is very dark brown.) But I was in a bit of a hurry.
Then pour in the beef broth slowly, whisking as you pour.
Now you just need to cook the gravy until it bubbles and thickens, about ten minutes or so.
Whisk as you go, scraping the sides of the pan to make sure you loosen all the bits.
Sometime during the cooking process, throw in a bunch (ya THINK?) of black pepper. Black pepper is a must.
Cook and whisk until it’s nice and thick.
By now the fries are ready. And they’re divine!
And now…I need to talk to you brace yourself. Place some fries on a plate.
Then place one of the burger patties on top.
And then…and then…GRAVY OVER ALL.
Yes, I just poured brown gravy over everything on the plate. Who wants to know?
And that’s the beauty of a hot hamburger. And if you don’t want to go through all the steps, you can take a shortcut and buy a packet of brown gravy mix—or even better, buy the stuff in the jar! I won’t tell anyone.
I’m pretty sure Murphy’s serves bread underneath the burger patty, then the fries over to the side, then drowns it all with the delicious brown gravy. That way, the bread underneath is not only soft from the grease of the burger…it’s deliciously soaked with gravy. Perfect!
You have to experience it once in your life.
Another option would be to serve the burger in its normal state—with a bun and everything—then serve the fries with a bowl of gravy. When ballet season was over every year and I felt like I could eat something besides carrot sticks, I’d go straight to Murphy’s and order fries with a side of gravy. It was my own brand of teenage rebellion.
Whatever you do, the fries must go with the gravy.
It’s a universal mandate.
Enjoy, and thanks again to Alisha for sharing this hometown treat!
Here’s the printable recipe: Murphy’s Hot Hamburgers, by AlishaGibb