I’ve written several times over the past few weeks about my efforts to eat better and be more active in the new year. While my initial attempts have been fairly successful, it certainly isn’t the easiest thing to do and I’ve felt the temptation to indulge over the last few days.


Specifically, I’ve felt a craving for a hamburger. By that, I mean I want one right now, even as I write this write this column. Please send help.


This got me thinking — and potentially as a way of humoring my cravings without actually indulging in them — about what makes for a good hamburger. The answer covers the gamut and every person certainly has his or her own answer. To each his or her own, I suppose.


However, when it comes to the art of the burger, I find that the true answer has to do with simplicity. In short, don’t over do it, and you should be fine.


So many people try to make a burger something more than it needs to be. It doesn’t need a lot of tricks, special sauces or fancy ingredients to be tasty. A good burger also doesn’t need cheese, despite what some may say.


My go to standard for burgers is the patty with mayo and all the veggies. Grilled onions are fine, but fresh work just as well.


Once again, don’t over do it.


Save the ketchup for the french fries and mustard for your hot dogs — which both could make up a column all of their own — but I digress.


The one place where I break from this is the patty itself. While I still say it doesn’t need fancy ingredients, the patty is a place where you need balance. On one hand, you want the meat to be juicy and not overcooked, but you don’t want to risk under cooking the meat either.