Create Your Own Slider Bar

Burger Bar
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Let’s start with a fresh approach to your Memorial Day cookout. Let’s open up our burger definition to include all the deliciousness of beef, pork, and turkey.

Had enough basic hamburgers to last you… well… the rest of your life? How about kicking up the standard burger with a variety of meats and toppings? And let’s not just do ground beef with Cheddar, mustard, and ketchup, or throw a slice of bacon on it and think it’s bold.

We’re going to go at this with some delicious but easy-to-do burgers and add some real variety. And to make it even easier, we can even have toppings ready ahead of time. You already know that your TRU-Infrared™ grill will help you cook great food. Add to the mix some great quality ingredients, and complicated steps aren’t needed to impress anyone.

burger bar

On top of that, let’s mix up this year’s cookout even more by moving it up the healthy food scale. We’re making burgers that are delicious, easy, and healthier.

The first step is knowing the source of the meat. When possible all the meat used for the burgers should be from trusted sources that provide organic or all-natural meats, and from local farmers. For instance, look for ground turkey from a turkey farm that raises all-natural, hormone-free turkeys. The beef might be organic beef from a local market, the pork from a farm less than 200 miles away, ground fresh at the same local market. Toppings for the burgers can be organic or all-natural. Organic costs a bit more, but you can trust what’s in the food (and know what’s not).

On to the burgers!

Let’s start with the day before. Toppings that are great on burgers include sautéed onions and shallots. Simply slice the onions into thin slices and place in a pan over medium heat with a tablespoon of olive oil. Stir the onions every few minutes until they are nicely browned. That’s really all there is to it. Remove the onions, let them cool and refrigerate until the cookout. For the shallots, do the same steps, with one addition: Once the shallots are almost done, add 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar and let it cook down before removing the shallots from the heat.

burger seasonings

Grilled poblano chiles can also be done ahead. For these, fire up the TRU-Infrared™ grill to medium, about 400-450°F. On the outside burners, keep the heat up to medium-high and place wood chips on the grates. Place the whole poblano chiles right on the grate, turning after a few minutes. The skin of the chiles should be a bit charred and partially separated from the chile. After the chiles are nicely charred on each side, remove them and let them cool. Remove the stem and seeds, then pull the skin off the flesh of the chile (this should be easy to do with just your fingers). Cut the chiles into large strips and refrigerate overnight.

grilled hamburgers

While the chiles are on the grill, we’re going to add some apple slices, too. I use Honeycrisp, but any organic apple will do as long as you like the variety. Simply slice the apple into a few medium slices, leaving the skin on but removing any core and seeds in the center. Grill alongside the chiles, turning after 2-3 minutes.

grilled burgers

All the other toppings are store-bought, including organic cranberry sauce, guacamole, whole grain slider buns, organic heirloom tomatoes, Humboldt Fog cheese, creamy goat cheese, goat’s milk Cheddar cheese, sheep’s milk bleu cheese and Cheddar (I used goat’s milk for this, too, but any good Cheddar will do). For the meats, I got ground turkey and pork and organic beef, along with house-made chorizo sausage.

sliders

To prep the burgers, I used about 3 ounces of meat per burger. By using the slider buns and smaller burgers, we’re staying a bit healthier again with smaller servings. To keep the burgers from grilling themselves into meatballs, I pressed them a bit thin and I added a depression right in the middle of each patty. On smaller burgers, this seems to help – or maybe I just keep telling myself that! Wash your hands after forming the patties from each meat to avoid cross-contamination.

Sliders

To prep the TRU-Infrared™ grill, preheat it on high for 10 minutes, then turn the middle burners down to medium and the outside burners to medium-high heat, with wood chips added for some smoke flavor. I used my Char-Broil Gourmet 4-burner TRU Infrared™ grill.

The burgers won’t take long to cook since they’re smaller, so it’s best to quickly warm up the shallots and onions. You can do this on the stove or by placing them on foil and putting them on the grill for just a few quick minutes until warm. The same can be done with the poblano and apple.

create-your-own-slider-bar

Put the burgers on the grill according to the type of meat. It’s not hard to tell each apart even cooked, but it’s easier to put the cheese on after flipping. They only need to cook 3-4 minutes on each side. Once you turn the burgers, add the cheese quickly and shut the lid to melt the cheese. I used the creamy goat cheese on the turkey, the Cheddar on the pork, the bleu cheese on the beef, and the Humboldt Fog on the chorizo (it’s a goat cheese with a bit of vegetable ash and the flavor stands up well to the chorizo). Once the burgers reach an internal temperature of 160°F, take them off the grill and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes. Then it’s time to open up the burger bar!

 

You can pre-make various burger combinations or the guests can build their own. I chose to make the burgers so guests can just select the one they want (it’s always a good idea to not put cheese on every single burger).

 

The turkey burgers received a dollop of cranberry sauce. The pork burgers got a slice of apple and some grilled onions along with a touch of horseradish mustard. The beef burgers were put on the bun on top of a slice of heirloom tomato and were then topped with balsamic shallots. And the chorizo burgers were topped with poblano chile slices and guacamole (I have to admit these were my favorite in this bunch!).

These are just a few variations on the classic burger; use your imagination and come up with your own combinations. Ground chicken can be topped with bleu cheese and buffalo sauce, for instance. Let us know what combos you come up with for your Memorial Day Burger Bar!

Livefire Burger Bar

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 20 sliders

Serving Size: --

Calories per serving: --

Fat per serving: --

Try a burger bar with unusual toppings for your next cookout.

Ingredients

    Turkey Burgers
  • 1 pound all-natural ground turkey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 5 multi-grain slider buns
  • 1/4 cup creamy goat cheese (in container)
  • 1/4 cup organic cranberry sauce
  • Pork Sliders
  • 1 pound all-natural ground pork
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 5 multi-grain slider buns
  • 1/4 pound goat's milk Cheddar cheese
  • 1 Honeycrisp apple, sliced into 5 slices with seeds and core removed
  • 1 medium onion, grilled or caramelized
  • Horseradish mustard
  • Beef Burger Sliders
  • 1 pound organic ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 5 multi-grain slider buns
  • 2 shallots, sautéed in balsamic vinegar
  • 1 heirloom tomato, sliced
  • 1/4 pound bleu cheese
  • Chorizo Sliders
  • 1 pound ground chorizo
  • 5 multi-grain slider buns
  • 2 poblano chiles, grilled and sliced (stems and seeds removed)
  • 1/2 cup guacamole

Instructions

    Turkey Burgers
  1. Preheat the grill to medium.
  2. Add the salt and pepper to the meat and form into five patties, 3 ounces each.
  3. Grill the burgers for approximately 3 minutes per side, adding cheese after turning.
  4. Remove from the grill when the internal temperature reaches 165 °F, and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes before serving.
  5. Place each patty on a bun, adding cranberry sauce on top of the patty. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Pork Sliders
  7. Add the salt and pepper to the meat and form into five patties, 3 ounces each.
  8. Grill the burgers for approximately 3 minutes per side, adding cheese after turning.
  9. Remove from the grill when the internal temperature reaches 160 °F, and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes before serving.
  10. Place each patty on a bun, adding a slice of grilled apple and topping with caramelized onions and horseradish mustard.
  11. Beef Burger Sliders
  12. Add the salt and pepper to the meat and form into five patties, 3 ounces each.
  13. Grill the burgers for approximately 3 minutes per side, adding cheese after turning.
  14. Remove from the grill when the internal temperature reaches 160 °F, and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes before serving.
  15. Place each patty on a bun with an heirloom tomato slice. Top with balsamic-sauteed shallots.
  16. Chorizo Sliders
  17. Form the meat into five patties, 3 ounces each.
  18. Grill the burgers for approximately 3 minutes per side, adding cheese after turning.
  19. Remove from the grill when the internal temperature reaches 160 °F, and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes before serving.
  20. Place each patty on a bun, with poblano chile slices and guacamole, and serve immediately.

Notes

For the best results, these sliders should be served immediately.

http://www.charbroil.com/community/create-your-own-slider-bar/

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