Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 7th 2017 Contents A24 life
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A little beer adds a lot of
flavour in these sliders
Indeed, if you plan to serve
a variety of dishes for a big
gathering, sliders are more
sensible than the full-sized
guys. But they happen to be
a little trickier to cook than
a standard-issue burger. The
slider's size makes it tough to
put a nice crust on the outside
while ensuring that it doesn't
overcook on the inside.
These sliders are adapted from
a burger I used to make a million
years ago at a bar in Ann Arbor
called the Del Rio --- my first job
as a cook. Dubbed the Det Burger,
this marvel was dreamed up before
I landed at the Del Rio by a cook
named Bob Detweiler, who bap-
tized the creation after himself.
The heart of the original version
was a quarter-pounder topped by
"the Det mix" --- canned mush-
rooms, canned olives, grilled on-
ions, freeze-dried green peppers
and Kraft Singles.
But there also was a secret in-
gredient: beer. The Det Burger
was steamed in beer. If it wasn't
quite "the burger that made Ann
Arbor famous," it was undeniably
a city-wide favorite.
A generation later, I assembled
the same winning combo of in-
gredients --- though in a fresher
form --- and then focused on the
cooking process to make sure that
these mini-burgers ended up both
juicy and crusty. There are a few
First, the sliders need to be about
3G4 inch thick, not only so they
don't overcook, but so you can fit
all of them at one time into the skil-
let. Second, the skillet needs to be
large, a 12-incher. If you don't have
a skillet that big, use two smaller
ones and cook six sliders in each.
And third, whichever skillet you
use, the oil must be heated until
it's almost smoking. At the start,
you want the burgers to sear, not
steam, which is what will happen
if the pan isn't hot enough.
At first, the sliders will be
crowded together in the skillet,
but they'll shrink down as they
cook, giving off fat and juices in
the process. You deglaze the pan
with beer, of course, which mingles
intimately with the fat and juices
released by the burgers to create a
delectable pan sauce.
I recommend spooning some
of this liquid onto the buns before
sliding in the burgers, but my son
proposes a more extravagant way to
roll: pour the sauce into ramekins
and invite your guests to dunk their
sliders into it between bites.
of the lettuce
in your salad
We all know that salads are great for
us,they aid in digestion (thanks to fiber)
and they're full of antioxidants but it's a
good idea to make sure you're building
that salad with the best greens.
There's a reason kale salads have taken
off in popularity; they're nutritional power-
houses. One cup of kale satisfies all your daily
requirements for vitamins A, C and K. Plus,
it has three grams of protein to boot. Kale is
the antithesis of iceberg, which basically has
the nutritional value of water (plus a little
fiber). But, if you just can't take the thought
of another bite of kale, there are other salad
greens that will supply you with nutrients.
• Romaine and loose head lettuces, such
as red leaf and butterhead, pack more an-
tioxidants and nutrients than tighter heads
of greens (like iceberg), especially vitamins
A and K. They are also a good source of fol-
ic acid--- particularly Romaine. So, when in
doubt, go loose.
• Spinach offers an ever bigger nutritional
jolt. It's not only packed with vitamin A and
K, but also has hearty amounts of iron and
calcium. Did we mention the potassium?
That's right, you can take a break from ba-
• If you go the cruciferous route with aru-
gula, you have the advantage of phytochem-
icals, which may inhibit the development of
certain cancers. That's a whole lot of good
in one bowl of salad.
When you're up for it, go even heartier.
It doesn't have to be kale. Tougher rough-
age like chard, escarole and mustard greens
contain lots of good nutrition. A good rule
of thumb is the darker the leaves, the higher
the nutrition. (Darker means the plants were
able to absorb more light, which means they
were able to synthesise nutrients.)
But whatever green you choose for your
salad, you can feel good about making a
healthy choice ---especially if you add lots
of other veggies, too.
For a really nutrient-dense salad, consider
mixing all of the above greens in one bowl,
that's tops. Now, go make some salad.
Beer steamed cheese and mushroom beef sliders. PHOTO: MATTHEW MEAD
BEER-STEAMED CHEESE AND MUSHROOM BEEF SLIDERS
3 tbsp vegetable oil, divided
1/2 cup finely chopped yellow
3 ozs mushrooms (white, cremini
or shiitake), finely chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped pitted green
2 tbsp finely chopped, drained,
canned green chiles
3 ozs sliced sharp cheddar cheese,
broken into 12 equal pieces
1 1/2 lbs ground beef, shaped into
12 sliders, each about 3/4 inch
Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup beer
12 slider buns
In a large (at least 12-inch) skillet
over medium, heat one tablespoon
of the oil.
Add the onion and cook until golden,
for about eight minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the
onion to a bowl. Add another table-
spoon of the oil to the pan, then add
the mushrooms and a hefty pinch
Cook, stirring occasionally, until the
liquid the mushrooms give off has
evaporated, for about five minutes.
Transfer the mushrooms to the
bowl with the onion. Reserve the
Add the olives and chiles to the
mushroom mixture and stir well.
Return the skillet to high heat. Add
the remaining tablespoon of oil
and wait until it is almost smoking.
Meanwhile, season the sliders on
one side with salt and pepper. When
the oil is hot, add the sliders, sea-
soned side down (it will be a little
crowded in the pan), and cook them
until they are just browned on the
first side, for about 2 minutes. Sprin-
kle the top side of each with salt
and pepper, turn the sliders over and
cook for another 2 minutes.
While the sliders are browning,
top each slider with a heaping tea-
spoon of the mushroom mixture,
dividing all of the mixture among
the sliders, then place a piece of
cheese on top of each. Quickly pour
the beer into the pan, all around the
sliders, cover the pan and steam
for two minutes.
Turn off the heat and let the sliders
sit in the pan for another minute
to let the cheese melt completely.
Spoon some of the liquid in the
skillet onto the tops and bottoms
of the buns, transfer the sliders to
the buns and serve right away.
Makes 12 sliders.
• Written by AP Food writer
280 calories (120 calories from
fat), 13 grams fat (4 grams sat-
urated), 45 milligrams cholester-
ol, 16 grams protein, 23 grams
carbohydrates, 1 gram dietary
fiber, 370 milligrams sodium
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