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McDonald’s Tweaks Classic ‘Big Mac’, ‘Quarter Pounder’ To Look & Taste Better
By Mikelle Leow, 07 Aug 2019
Image via 8th.creator / Shutterstock.com
Your comfort food from McDonald’s is receiving a few changes, as the fast food giant is rethinking its beef burgers for quality assurance.
Previous attempts, such as adjustments made by Golden Arches to its apple pie recipe and its straws, could indicate that this won’t bode well—but fret not, McDonald’s promises that none of the tweaks to the sandwiches will be “hugely noticeable.”
According to the Financial Post, McDonald’s spent “several years” of research and development before figuring out that it would take a top burger bun that’s shorter by three millimeters (0.12 inches), an extra 10 millimeters (0.4 inches) of sauce, more grilling space, and other tweaks, to hit the sweet spot for its ‘Big Mac’ burger.
During blind taste tests, guests apparently enjoyed their new and improved burgers, but could not pinpoint how the menu items had changed.
“Our guests are saying… ‘I don’t know what you’ve done a little bit differently, but something is really good about this product today,’” reported Nicola Pitman, director of menu innovation and management at McDonald’s Canada.
The alterations will first roll out in Canada and Australia respectively, with some of the techniques being applied to McDonald’s classic beef burgers, including its cheeseburger. While the modifications are not “hugely noticeable,” Pitman explained they “make a big impact in that end product.”
Across the board, McDonald’s has amped up its burger preparation methods in four areas: grilling, dressing, saucing and the baking of buns.
When grilling the beef patties, McDonald’s says it will no longer squeeze them all the way down for a good sear, as too much juices might escape from the burgers.
Instead, they will be held down at the top for a shorter amount of time. “We sear and… sort of lift away from it,” Pitman described.
To bring out more flavor during the grilling process, McDonald’s employees will also add onions directly to the patties so that they can soak in onion juices.
When cooked, onions “stick to the meat really nicely,” Pitman said, creating a “little caramelized note” with the piping-hot beef.
Additionally, McDonald’s will grill two less patties at a time for better heat distribution and even sears. This means the standard for eight regular-sized beef patties on a grill will be reduced to six, and the maximum number of ‘Quarter Pounder’ patties that can sit on the grill will be whittled down from six to four.
McDonald’s burgers might soon look and taste closer to what’s depicted in product photos, as the fast food chain is also making sure its lettuce is crispier and that its buns glisten and appear golden-brown.
Lettuce trays will be downsized, so employees will have to visit the fridge more often to get lettuce. This ensures the greens will stay fresh and crisp.
The most apparent difference would be McDonald’s bun recipe. A new version brings more moisture to the buns, increasing their heat retention so patrons can “feel that nice warm bun.” A shorter top bun allows for “deeper heat penetration,” with its reduced three millimeters (0.12 inches) being added to the bottom bun.
McDonald’s buns will additionally be given a glaze not only to lock in heat and moisture, but also boost their “overall bun appearance.” The bread will also be toasted longer to create a “fresh caramelized bread flavor.”
A new buttery note helps balance out the acidity of the ‘Big Mac’ sauce, Pitman added.
Details on when the recipe and preparation tweaks will make their way to the US and countries beyond Canada and Australia have not been announced.
[via Financial Post, cover image via 8th.creator / Shutterstock.com]
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