I may be a messy bitch, but I am not a messy eater, and I absolutely hate it when toppings — be they on pizza or burgers — slide off prematurely. Forgoing lettuce or pickles simply to avoid a shirt stain is a little too precious, but you can greatly decrease your chances of slippage by dicing and shredding your favourite burger accessories.
Not only do these cut accoutrements (acCUTerments?) stay put, their smaller size means they can be distributed more evenly, maximising the flavour and texture each has to offer.
I have already documented my love for shredded lettuce in all sandwiches, and burgers are included in that, but just to recap: shrettuce stays put and it gives condiments a rougher area to stick to, de-slickifying the burger over all. It also just feels a little more fun in your mouth.
Unlike haphazard, overlapping rings, super tiny onions offer texture and distribution benefits, and they keep the amount of onion modest so that it does not overwhelm the actual burger patty.
Then there are pickles. Though I will never turn my nose up at an aggressively green dill chip, dicing pickles pre-burger opens up a whole world of topping possibilities, as a lot of fancy-boy pickles only come in wholes or halves. The rough little cubes of preserved cucumber stay in place, and you can experiment by mixing pickle types — try bread and butter and pickled cucumber, if you’re feeling crazy. (You can also just use relish.)
Even though bacon is not a slippery subject, I am still a fan of crumbling super crisp strips directly onto melted cheese to ensure the maximum amount of surface area is covered in bacon.
The only topping I don’t recommend slicing is the tomato, simply because doing so often results in a loss of gel and seeds, which is where all the flavour is. But if you slide your tomato slices in between two other (chopped or shredded) toppings, their rougher texture should be enough to keep the ‘matos in place.