For those of you who read my blog, you know that I’m a bit of a goofball.
I giggled when the Scolari’s (grocery store) checker advised me to wear goggles whenever I fried anything.
[Whatever. I got this. I can do anything.]
How painfully right she was.
And she didn’t even know me.
Ugh. Hate it when that happens.
It happened again last night when I was making these sliders.
Right in the eyeball.
Guess what I bought from Wal-Mart today.
You got it. Goggles.
Between the goggles and the grill vs. griddle incident, I must admit that I’ve developed quite a complex, as of late…
[Am I losing my touch???!!?]
No. This is just me. Just how I am. My friends and family call them “Lora Stories.”
[Awesome. I'm such a goofball that I have my own category of stories.]
And trust me, there are lots of them. From me in auto shop (in high school) trying to “ground” a wire (don’t even ask) to hiding in a closet in college when a date came to pick me up (I know, bad karma)… There are too many to tell here.
I think the goggles have me caught up on my karma though. Seriously. Goggles in the kitchen.
Who does that??!!
Wipe that grin off your face!
[Okay, don't. I like it when you Smile.] :)
And laugh. It’s all good, trust me.
Okay, okay, let’s get to this slider business, shall we?
This recipe, borrowed from Cuisine at Home, June, 2011 edition, page 21, pairs nicely with the Brioche slider buns I posted (same Cuisine at Home magazine).
If, however, you have 4 hours to cook.
I debated if I should throw that in, but I gotta be honest with ya’all. I cook, I read, (I page-lick my cooking magazine subscriptions – oh! Sorry – that wasn’t supposed to go there!), I experiment, I interpret, I pass on whatever wisdom I can to you to help you in your kitchen endeavors.
The bread and sliders took me 4 hours yesterday.
I love my kitchen time, but I was more than a little punchy after 4 hours.
Breaking it down: Sliders – much less time. Bread – more time. But between the two – 4 hours in the kitchen (with a few breaks).
Here are my suggestions:
The Brioche slider buns really do add a lot. They are amazing. Coupla’ plans of action: a) make them a day or so before (breaking up the work times, essentially), b) have a weekend where you want time in your kitchen and putz and play with these recipes (this is what I did), or c) buy sweet slider “buns” to make the recipe quicker (I’d suggest the Royal Hawaiian dinner rolls – think freezer section – they’re comparable to the Brioche buns), and promise me you’ll make the Brioche buns (or bread) another time because it truly is delicious.
Makes 48 patties.
[I know. I almost gasped. 48 patties. Essentially, this recipe: 1) feeds an army, 2) is great for a Super Bowl party, 3) nourishes Ethiopia (how did that get in there!?), 4) creates enough leftovers that all your boyfriend's friends will get word and come pick up their lunchbox from your house, 5) makes your dog(s) wish she was getting something from that giant leftover bowl, 6) gives you a great excuse to have a party!!!]
* 8 strips thick-cut bacon, chopped and frozen until hard to the touch (about 30 minutes)
* 3 lbs ground chuck (that’s the 70/30 split; you can go 80/20, but going any less fat on this may create dryer/crustier patties – eww – so stick to a bit of fat count, if you can)
* Caramelized shallots (recipe follows)
* Cheddar cheese, sliced into 1.5-inch squares (approximately), and enough for 48 patties
* Brioche buns (click here for the recipe), OR 48 Royal Hawaiian sweet dinner rolls, halved
* Dill pickle slices (please just only use Classen brand – they’re more expensive, but they’re simply the best)
* 5 cups sliced shallots (10 to 12 large shallots)
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 2 tsp kosher salt
Heat a medium-large skillet over medium heat. Add oil and heat until shimmering. Add shallots and salt. Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook until caramelized, about 1 hour, stirring often.
Pulse the bacon in a food processor until finely ground. Combine it with the chuck, thoroughly mixing.
Press meat mixture into a large 11 1/2 X 16 1/2-inch baking sheet, lined with plastic wrap (don’t have that – like me? – use a large casserole dish – or 2). Don’t forget to line your dish with the plastic wrap – it’s important to the ease of this recipe.
Score the meat with 48 (or thereabouts) equal portions with a bench knife (or other sharp knife). Turn scored meat onto a cutting board, discarding the plastic wrap. Using scissors or a knife, cut the scored meat into squared-off patties. Keep in the fridge until you’re ready to cook.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
Season the patties lightly with salt and pepper (the bacon mix will add quite a bit of salt to the chuck mixture, so s & p carefully). Preheat a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat.
[Put your goggles on.]
Add as many patties as you can in a single layer in the skillet (usually about 6 or 7). Cook over medium high heat until done, flipping halfway through, about 4 minutes on the first side and 3 minutes on the second side. Top each slider patty with cheese and about 1 tsp caramelized shallots. Transfer to a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven.
Whether you’re using the homemade Brioche slider buns or slider buns that are store-bought: Toast 1 batch of buns, cut-side down, in the same skillet over medium-low heat until lightly toasted, about 1 minute. Repeat frying the patties and alternate with bun toasting (!? don’t know I’m laughing at that but I am!).
Serve sliders on toasted buns (!!!) with sliced Claussen dill pickles.
Now, those, my Friends, are some great sliders!
And, don’t forget your goggles! :)