Last Saturday, I provided a recipe for Mushroom Merlot Burgers. If you try them, let me know what you think!

So, who taught you to grill a decent hamburger or steak on your barbecue? According to Chef Richard Chamberlain, owner of Chamberlain’s Steak and Chop House in Dallas, it may be time for a crash course in Grilling 101.

“People love beef, but many don’t know how to cook lean cuts,” he says. He recommends purchasing The Healthy Beef Cookbook, which offers “more than 130 delicious and healthy lean beef solutions that are easy to prepare for anyone.”

Chef Chamberlain, in cooperation with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, offers the following grilling tips:

  • When grilling a “tapered” piece of beef, place the thinner end away from the fire to cook the meat evenly.
  • Be patient. Too much turning does not cook beef properly.
  • Turn steaks and roasts with tongs, not with a fork. A fork will pierce the beef and allow flavorful juices to escape.
  • If you forget to marinate beef in the morning for a stir-fry or salad, simply slice it into strips. The marinating time will be cut to only 20 minutes.

The Power of Umami

Did you know your taste buds have a fifth taste, in addition to sweet, salty, bitter and sour?

Known as umami (oo-MOM-ee), from the Japanese word for “delicious,” this fifth taste is described as meaty and savory, as characterized by the flavor of beef. Pairing umami-rich foods like beef with tomatoes, wine, soy sauce, mushrooms, cheese, corn, spinach or beets can add an explosion of flavor the next time you grill.

Note: Because you are committed to organic living, OrganicAuthority.com recommends using certified organic foods, when available, in all recipes to maximize flavor and nutrition, while minimizing your risk of exposure to pesticides, chemicals and preservatives.