Tuesday, March 19, 2013

White Castle Slider Wannabes

March Madness is upon us.  It's yet another opportunity to gather 'round the couch with your friends and drink a few cold ones while eating junk, all in the name of sports.  I love America!  And what is more American than a cheeseburger?

While "bigger is better" is typically the American mindset, sliders have managed to find a nice, miniature, spot in our hearts.  And why not?  They're a fun change up from a standard burger, they can be eaten one handed, and you can eat multiple of them guilt-free.  Plus, they make great party food because your guests can enjoy a cheeseburger without filling up, allowing them to enjoy the rest of the delicious food you have worked so hard to prepare.  And one of the best things about this slider recipe is that these particular mini-burgers are the easiest burgers I have ever made!

Slider burgers are famous in no small part due to White Castle burgers.  These miniature square burgers with sauteed onion and pickles have a cult following.  What other burger has had a movie made about it?  I have only had one White Castle experience, and it was amazing.  Sadly, the closest White Castle to me is still far, far away.  White Castle burgers can be purchased frozen for reheating, but I'm not about to do that, especially now that I know how easily I can make my own tasty version at home!

Unfortunately, these are probably also the unhealthiest burgers I have ever made.  Here's how the magic happens:  
To recreate the onions, which are part of the magic of a White Castle burger, instead of chopping up and sauteing an onion, just spread 1/4 cup of dehydrated chopped onion on the bottom of an 8x8-inch baking dish.  How will the onions go from dehydrated to hydrated?  With beef juice (saying juice makes me feel better than calling it what it is, fat).  I think my license should be revoked just for writing this.

To hydrate the onions with beef juice (cringe), spread the beef over the onions.  Then just pop it in the oven and bake it.  Just before they're done you top the beef with slices of cheese and put in back in the oven for a few minutes to let the cheese melt.  

Cut, 'em into small squares, put on a roll with a pickle slice or two, and serve.  That's it.  Seriously!  There's about one minute of hands-on time involved.  Even if you live next door to White Castle, these are easier.  

This is what it looks like hot out of the oven.  Yes, I just said burgers hot out of the oven.  Weird!

Who knew it could be so easy to make your very own mouthwatering White Castle slider wannabes?  I am so happy these little burgers are in my life, and I can't wait to get them in my mouth again soon!  Enjoy the madness!

White Castle Slider Wannabes
1/4 cup dried onion flakes
1 pound ground beef
1/2 tsp seasoned salt
4 slices American cheese
9 small rolls, cut in half
Pickle slices, mustard, ketchup
Evenly spread dried onions on the bottom of an 8x8" baking dish.  Gently press the ground beef on top of the onion flakes (cover the entire dish, making one giant beef patty).  Sprinkle with seasoned salt.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until internal temperature is 165 degrees.  Remove dish from oven and blot off excess grease with a paper towels.  Top with cheese and return to oven for 2 more minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Cut beef patty 3x3 to make 9 patties.  Serve on rolls with desired condiments.
Recipe can be doubled and made in a 9x13-inch pan!

Recipe adapted from Big Red Kitchen

1 comment:

  1. I make a "White Castle" version as my mom used to call them which may be just slightly healthier. I brown ground beef and drain off the fat...sometimes I rinse it under hot water to get even more fat off the browned meat...then return to the pan. Add about 2 Tablespoons flour and stir to coat the meat well. Add 1 can of Campbell's French Onion soup and about 1/2 can water. Bring to a boil and then turn down heat and simmer until thick. My son who absolutely loves White Castles devours these and says they remind him so much of the real thing. I serve on a regular hamburger bun and definitely add the pickles!