Sunday, May 23, 2010

Garden Totem and a Memorial Day recipe

I am still making them but I must admit they are becoming a bit boring.

Those little porcelain birds I've been picking up at the thrift stores are coming in handy.

Sorry for the light reflection on the bottom. This is the smallest totem I've made. It is going to a friend and they are so much easier to deliver when they are small!

My daughter is having a party on Memorial Day and she wanted to serve sliders but she did not want to stand by the grill all day so we experimented with this recipe ahead of time and oh boy...this is a keeper! Take a cookie sheet and cover it with parchment paper. Sprinkle the entire surface with dried onion bits. Use a lot of them because they are a big part of why this recipe is so wonderful.

Take 2 pounds of ground meat and sit it right in the middle of the pan. Do not use lean ground meat because you want these to be juicy.

Put a sheet of plastic wrap over the meat and begin rolling it out to the edges of the pan and covering the dried onions.

Remove the plastic wrap.

Sprinkle the surface of the meat with a seasoned salt. Don't skimp on the salt. You don't want to have to salt these while eating. Place the pan in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes

I made homemade miniature buns. Some stores now carry slider buns or you could also use the mini potato rolls from the store but homemade is best!

After 20 minutes remove the pan from the oven and turn the oven off. The meat will have shrunk a bit while cooking.

Sprinkle the entire surface with cheddar cheese. You can use any kind of cheese that you like. Sit the pan back in the oven for a few minutes until the cheese melts.

The meat re-hydrates the onions while cooking and actually sort of sucks them up into the meat.

Cut the meat into squares to fit the buns. Top with some ketchup, mustard and a couple dill pickles.

These are the best sliders I have ever had. Plus, you get about 40 of them from one cookie sheet so you can feed lots of people very simply and inexpensively. These are sized so that you can eat them in about 2 bites. They can even be made in advance and gently reheated right before serving. We will be making these often. They would also make a great dish to serve for tailgating in the fall!

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