Julia Bryce puts the latest luxury burger kit to the test to find out if wagyu burgers can outshine the regular favourite.
MasterChef: The Professionals finalist and Angus-born chef Dean Banks has dominated the sea with his Haar at Home food delivery box.
And now, he’s looking to conquer the land having launched his own burger kit which features prized wagyu beef.
Named Waagyu Burger, the name nods to the exclusive meat included in the box which is some of the best beef you can find in the UK.
Spending around two months developing and perfecting his burger recipe, Dean launched the brand at the end of last year and has already experienced huge success with orders increasing every week.
Utilising his favourite suppliers Dean has created a burger kit which not only showcases outstanding beef, but shines a light on other local producers including Barnet’s Bakery in Anstruther and John Henderson meat specialist in Glenrothes.
Bringing a second luxury dine-at-home experience to customers across the UK, Dean says these burgers “aren’t your average burgers” and make for a memorable eat.
Tried and tested
Sampling it for myself, I put my burger flipping skills to the test – however, there was actually minimal flipping involved with Dean suggesting the burgers were best enjoyed after frying and putting them in the oven.
First on the agenda when the box arrived was to uncover what is included.
- 4 x wagyu burgers
- 4 x Barnets Bakery sesame brioche buns
- 4 x slices of mature cheddar
- 4 x Henderson streaky bacon
- Crisp baby gem lettuce
- Slow-cooked caramelised onions
- Secret sauce (A.K.A HaarBQ burger mayonnaise)
The trick to creating a good burger is really down to the quality of the meat and how it is cooked.
Within the Waagyu kit box I received was an instruction card with a clear guide on what to do. It was super easy to follow, and although Dean reveals his favourite way to plate and stack his burgers’ toppings, customers are encouraged to experiment and serve their own way.
Kicking off cooking
The first thing I did was pre-heat my oven and get all of my ingredients prepped to ensure I was ready to follow the step-by-step instructions.
Although you start off by cooking your burgers in a frying pan, this is short lived and they are quickly transferred into the oven to cook for roughly another 10 minutes.
While they were cooking, I got to work on frying the streaky bacon, which again, took no time at all as it was so thin and long. I like my bacon crispy so ensured there was plenty of oil to sizzle it in.
After I had finished cooking the bacon, I set it to one side and prepared my lettuce before putting the tub of caramelised onions in the microwave for ease. I had decided to add in some red chillies and red onion, so chopped them both into thin slices to add into the mix. I then cut the large, shiny buns in half and placed them into the oven for a few minutes to lightly toast them.
Once toasted I put them on the frying pan to soak up a little of the juices from the burger and the bacon which was easily absorbed into the thick bun.
By this point the burgers were cooked so I removed them from the oven and placed the slice of bright yellow cheddar cheese on top. It melted much faster than expected so I had to work fast in getting prepped to assemble them before the cheese melted off the burger.
First up was the bun, then the sauce (which there was plenty of), onions, the juicy burger which was oozing with cheese all over it by this point, the crisp bacon, fresh chillies and red onion, lettuce leaves and topped with the bun.
The burger meat itself was incredible. Juicy and rich, the flavour that the marbling of the wagyu created was unlike any burger I have tasted before. The patty itself was huge and incredibly thick, you could almost have cut it in half and made it into a double patty burger, rather than this one monstrous meaty creation. It melted in my mouth, and what a mouthful it was.
It was hard to eat it all in one go and I had to try and flatten it, squashing the lettuce and the bun to manage it all.
The large sesame buns even had a hard time trying to hold it all in, but they did, and soaked up all the juices while they were at it.
It was the onions and the secret burger sauce that did it for me though, besides the meat itself. The onions were deliciously sweet and had been thinly sliced but had created almost their own paste which I had lathered onto the bun.
The sauce as well was excellent and similar to crack sauce which, to me, nodded to Dean’s love of Asian cuisine. The chillies I had added weren’t necessary, albeit they did add a nice heat to a few mouthfuls.
The Waagyu Burger kit had an introductory price of £29.95 when I tried it and has now increased by £10 to £39.95. While I didn’t think £30 ish was expensive, I do think that nearer £40 may be harder for some to part with.
The kit doesn’t come with any sides so for four burgers and their toppings £40 does seem high given some of the other kits available on the market.
However, the quality of the produce inside is second to none and the burger is worth a substantial amount anyway – it really is excellent.
The kit makes four burgers and is something the whole family or household can get involved in. I added our own side of chips and onion rings which worked well, and we didn’t put nearly as much on our plate as we usually would due to the sheer size of the burger. It was a big eat and would have been just as enjoyable on its own.
Shipping is priced at £7 and the kit can be sent anywhere in the UK. Once received it should be refrigerated and enjoyed within two days.
For more information on the kit visit www.waagyuburger.co.uk.