Who doesn't like a big, thick, juicy burger covered in melted cheese dripping with your favorite sauce and/or condiments? We toil away to fashion our burger into our ultimate burger fantasy. The thing is, when I'm almost halfway through that big, thick, juicy burger, covered in cheese and sauce is dripping down to my elbows, a dark cloud moves in over me and sheer bliss turns into sheer misery.
Sliders have turned my sheer bliss into, well, actually kept sheer bliss alive and well. I can eat one and no cloud, no misery, no guilt. Sometimes if I dare, I can start on a second slider and still no cloud. It's amazing.
I've also learned another trick. I sometimes use half lean ground beef and half ground turkey. Sometimes it's all ground turkey. As long as no one sees the package, my family doesn't know the difference.
I didn't know the first time I made sliders that there was no such thing as "slider buns". Check out the bakery department in your grocery and pick out a dinner roll that you like or if you're really ambitious, make your own.
Kickin' Slider Sauce
1/3 cup low-fat sour cream (don't use fat-free)2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon horseradish
1/2 teaspoon Louisiana Hot Sauce
2 tablespoons buttermilk
2 tablespoons barbecue sauce of choice
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Whisk all of the ingredients together in a medium bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
2-1/2 pounds ground turkey or lean ground beef2 small shallots, finely chopped
2 tablespoons goat cheese
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
2 teaspoons grill seasoning (McCormick's Montreal Steak)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Low fat margarine spread or butter
8 slider sized dinner rolls or buns
4 slices pepper jack cheese, cut in half
4 slices hickory smoked bacon, cut in half and fried crisp
Kickin' Slider Sauce
In a large mixing bowl, break up the meat with your hands. Add the chopped shallot, garlic, goat cheese (this give the burger a little sumpin', sumpin'), grill seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, and salt and pepper, to taste. Thoroughly combine with your hands.
Divide the meat into 8 equal portions and form them into small patties. Press an indent in the center of each patty with your thumb. I've heard this indent will prevent the burgers from puffing up while cooking. It works.
Heat your grill to medium-high heat and spray grated with non-stick cooking spray. If using ground turkey, you shouldn't have "flame-ups" since the meat won't be expelling any fat. Grill the burgers uncovered, for 5 minutes on the first side. Flip and continue cooking for another 5 until cooked thoroughly. Top the patties with a one-half slice of pepper jack cheese. Once the cheese has melted, remove from grill, tent with foil to keep warm. Spread the margarine or butter the buns, sprinkle with a little garlic powder and place on the grill butter side down. Toast for about 1 minute and remove from grill.
Assemble your burger by placing a cheesy patty on the toasted bun, ladling a generous helping of Kickin' Sauce over the patty and topping it with a half slice of bacon.
Look! No clouds!