Monday, June 13, 2011

Mediterranean Inspired Sliders

   I can't remember the last time I had a beef burger before Saturday.  When I made the tester patty, I remembered how perfect and delicious a simple beef patty can be.  I was making food for a bunch of twenty-something Marines, so I didn't want to go too complicated on the flavors.  These sliders are about the beef and the bread.  They are not ordinary, but they are not fussy or complicated.  Simple, quality ingredients are what will set your mini-burgers apart.  (Obviously you can buy great focaccias at bakeries, but please try to make your own!)
Mediterranean Inspired Sliders
*This is a party sized recipe, but it can pretty easily be cut in half for a smaller gathering.
~1 lb 85/15 ground beef
~1 lb 93/7 ground beef
1/2 medium onion, finely minced
3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp ground sage
1-1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 C light mayo
1/4 C chopped parsley
1 Tbsp dijon or deli mustard
1/8 tsp salt
6 slices provolone
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1/2 of a large bunch spinach

   Combine mayo ingredients.
   Combine ingredients for patties using your hands.  Make a small patty to test seasoning.  Adjust seasoning if necessary.  Form meat into 20-24 patties about 3 in. in diameter and 1/4 in. thick.  Do not over work meat.
   For easy party food assembly, heat oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat.  Sear patties for 1 min on each side and transfer to a baking sheet. (This may be done a few hours before guests arrive.)  Place 1/4 of a slice of provolone on each patty.  Just before assembling your buffet, place sliders in a 400 deg F oven to melt cheese and cook patties all the way though, 5-7 minutes.
   Clean spinach really well, remove stems.  Roughly chop.  Heat a little oil over medium heat, saute garlic for 30-45 seconds.  Add spinach to pan.  Saute for 2-3 minutes, until just wilted.  Do not cook it down too much, you just want it tender.  (This needs to be done just before assembly.)
   Cut each pan of focaccia into twelve pieces and split in half.  Spread a little mayo on each side (This may be done about 1 hour before service.)  Add a little spinach and a patty.
   Serves 10-12.  (Two sliders per person.)

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