The Crispy, Buttery Cheese That Brings Mushy Burgers To Life

Who doesn't love a good cheeseburger? Comprised of a patty of meat with melting cheese and sandwiched between a warm buttery bun, it's a simple dish we love to make. Whether it's a basic burger or one topped with tons of fixings, people tend to prefer cheeseburgers. According to a recent study by Beef2Live, 39% of Americans enjoy a large cheeseburger, while a modest but still impressive 20% enjoy a regular cheeseburger. McDonald's became the fast-food empire it is by appealing to Americans' all-consuming need for a cheeseburger.

When making a good cheeseburger, a question arises: What kind of cheese should you use? Do you believe only American cheese and Kraft Singles should grace your beef? Or do you think people are sleeping on the boldness of cheddar cheese or the pleasant heat of pepper jack cheese? Do you believe that only the milkiness of Swiss cheese should complement the richness of the beef patty? There's a wide variety of cheeses to choose from when cooking. Each cheese has a unique flavor and specific melting abilities. It's hard to say which cheese should be the metaphorical "big cheese" on your cheeseburger. But there's one cheese you probably never heard of to try — one that is crispy and soft all at once, provided you prepare it right. Comté cheese crisps!

Try adding Comté cheese crisps to your next burger

Anyone who's ever had a cheeseburger — whether a cheap fast-food burger or an expensive one — can agree on one thing: a cheeseburger is soft. Of course, this isn't necessarily a bad thing! You want your beef to be tender instead of hard and dry, but all that melted cheese and melt-in-your-mouth beef can be overwhelming. You want something crunchy, something with a bite of firmness to it. But you also want something that won't ruin the burger's texture.

That's where Comté cheese crisps come into the picture! Described as being similar to Parmesan with a sharp yet buttery flavor, Comte cheese excels at being baked into thin crispy wafers. Shred — or purchase pre-shredded — Comte cheese and sprinkle it onto a baking sheet into small mounds. Bake the cheese for twelve minutes at 350 degrees until the cheese has melted and blot off any excess oil.

By putting these cheese crisps on your burger, you get the rich cheese flavor you expect in a cheeseburger without any overwhelming "mushiness." You can also bake the cheese crisps for a shorter amount of time. Make sure the crisps' edges have become golden brown, but the interior remains soft and melted. This way, when you bite into the burger, you'll get that hot melted center alongside that delicious golden crunch.

You can also use frico wafers instead of Comte

While cheese crisps on a cheeseburger might sound like a good idea, you may not be able to find Comte cheese as easily as other common forms of cheese at your local supermarket. If that's the case, don't worry. What you need to do is make frico wafers!

Frico — or "little trifles" in Italian — has one ingredient: Parmesan cheese. Using grated or shredded won't make a difference, so long as it's fresh cheese. To prepare frico wafers, spoon out mounds of cheese onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, and then place the tray into a 375-degree oven for 5 to 6 minutes. Bake until the cheese has become golden. But be careful: The smaller the cheese mounds are, the faster they cook. They might burn before the time is up. These cooled wafers work in several dishes — including soup, salad, or as a snack similar to Cheez-Its.

If you don't have shredded Parmesan to use, you can also use other types of shredded cheeses like cheddar or Asiago. But you want to avoid using cheeses that are harder to melt — like fresh mozzarella or Gouda — as they won't crisp up or melt in the same way other cheeses do.