12 September 2008

Barbequed Spiced Lamb Sliders

Barbecued Spiced Lamb Sliders
If you wait long enough the foods you remember from your childhood (that perhaps you were embarrassed to admit you loved) will eventually morph into something chic? In some very upscale establishments I have seen versions of "good 'ol" mac 'n cheese, shepherds pie and even stew. If you live in the States you may recall sliders from the White Castle. They have been transformed into something trendy in a lot of establishments.

White Castle restaurant was first founded in 1921 in Wichita, Kansas making it the oldest American hamburger/ fast food restaurant chain. I have never been to a White Castle Restaurant since it didn't reach Canada (as far as I know) but I have seen them advertised on the American channels on TV. They are credited with the invention of "the kitchen as an assembly line" which gave way to the fast food phenomenon we know today. It is known for square burgers (but so is Wendy's), sometimes referred to as "sliders" (officially spelled and trademarked as "Slyders").They were priced at five cents a burger until the 1940s, and remained at a cost of ten cents for years. To keep the costs down they grew smaller....and smaller....and smaller!!!!! I was always curious about where the name slider came from and now I know.

You see sliders on a lot of restaurant menus these days with tuna, lobster, chicken and beef....whatever they choose I guess. These diminutive mini burgers are packed with flavour in all of their two bites. I am on a burgerless bun kick...in fact these sliders are wrapped in lettuce. The lettuce and yogurt sauce also cut down on the heat if you choose to use the full 1-1/2 teaspoons of curry paste the recipe asks for. 

These lamb sliders are a lighter version because once again Val makes burgers without the bun. I use lettuce to wrap it instead.

**Barbecued Spiced Lamb Sliders"

1/3 cup medium bulgur
1/3 lb ground lamb
1/3 lb lean ground beef
1/2 medium onion , grated
2 -4 garlic cloves , minced
1/4 cup fresh mint , finely chopped (or 1 tsp dried mint)
1/2 to 1- 1/2 teaspoons red curry paste (I used only 1/2 tsp and it plenty spicy for me)
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 medium cucumber , grated, squeezed dry(about 1/2 cup)
1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt , Greek style
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
12 large lettuce leaves
1 medium tomato , chopped, about 1/2 cup

Soak bulgur in 1/3 cup hot water for 1 hour.

Combine the bulgur and the next 9 ingredients and then chill, covered for 30 minutes.

Mix cucumber, yogurt and pepper in a small bowl and season with salt.

Preheat the grill to medium-high.

Shape the meat mixture into 12 balls and flatten into thick mini burgers and season with salt.

Grill patties 4-8 minutes, turning once, until thermometer inserted registers 160 degrees F.

Wrap each burger in a lettuce leaf and serve with yogurt sauce and tomato.

You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author/owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison.
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  1. First of all, thanks for the award! I am so happy to know you like my site! I also love your great blog!

    Those sliders look terribly tempting and scrumptious! I'm drooling...



  2. Val, congrats on the award! I must say, I'm not that big on lamb, but I think all of my extremely talented, Greek-Canadian (or Greek-American) or just plain Greek bloggy friends may make a convert of me yet. These look wonderful.

    BTW... we have a really superb restaurant here in Ann Arbor that's based on the premise of road/comfort food using fresh and local ingredients. Here's the URL for the menu, in case you're interested:


  3. I don't know if I should be admitting this or not, but I've eaten at a White Castle, about 21 years ago when I was in college. I'm certain your BBQ Spiced Lamb Sliders would be better.

  4. First off, thank you for the award Val...that's really appreciated..I love your blog too! As for the sliders, this is something i don't recall ever having seen before. Even on my numerous trips to the States...whatever they call them, they look mighty delicious. I love how you explain everything and we get to learn something new each time...cheers!

  5. thanks VAlli!

    Those sound really good...
    but, I have to ask.......
    No chipotle? :)

  6. Hey Val Slyders look so inviting....i like mine with lettuce too.

  7. Thank you for the award Val - I'm so glad you like my blog - you know I'm a regular here!!

    This lamb slider has many of my favourite flavours in. In fact, I think lamb must be my favourite meat - yum!

  8. these burgers sound so interesting. I've never thought to add bulgur to a patty, but i bet it adds a nice texture. my family is Greek, so these will be a hit!

    it's been awhile since I had my first and only White Castle experience, but as I recall, I ate about five and loved every bite!

  9. Val, these look and sound amazing!

    Thanks for the award!

  10. Congrats on the award Val...truly deserved. I love your blog too. Sliders sound so quaint...& love 'em as wraps...very yummy!!

  11. That award is so cute, Congrats! I'm glad to hear that your daughter is finally home. This is so nice. I'm excited for you.

  12. Val, now I want a burger really badly and that's after a large bowl of spaghetti.

  13. Hey, sis sorry it's taken me so long to comment but I just sat on the computer and it is almost 10 p.m. I've never had a burger with bulgar. It sounds great.

  14. After all that time in Greece...I think I need a straight-up burger!

  15. Hey dear - ignore my insane email to you the other day about Adopt a Blogger. I always get you and Holler from Tinned Tomatoes confused! She was the one who had emailed me. Sorry about any confusion.

  16. Hey - um...sign me up for this slider!


  17. Hey - sign me up for this...I love a good slider!


  18. I am hungry for these right now, this very moment. Too bad lamb was expensive when I looked at it today.

    Thanks for the info about White Castle. I didn't know...

  19. Congrat's, Val! I heart your blog too! I think Ill try to hang on to summer a little longer with a plate of these sliders. Looking good!

  20. Bellini - You ahve sorted out our lunch for us today!
    This looks lovely.
    Have been away from cyberland for a month - now back with avengeance.
    I have been catching up on our old posts and they are superb.

  21. Aww thanks for the award! And now that I can get my hands on some ground lamb, I'm going to have to try this!

  22. Congrats on the award - Your blog is great! I'm loving that recipe too! Mmmm YUM!

  23. Hi! Just wanted to stop by and check out your blog when I saw the name. My blog is Burnt Toast. Your recipes look great and I'll definitely be checking back in!

  24. I did check out the web site Jen. I love to look at menus and see what is out there..is that a bad habit I have formed:D
    Sorry Marye...no chipotle...but you could substitute the curry paste...
    Jamie: Great minds think alike. Terry Hatcher from Desperate Housewives fame has a book out called Burnt Toast as well.

  25. Congrats on the award! Now slide one of those lamb sliders over to me;)

  26. Congrats on the award!
    Love the lamb burger by any name - and lettuce for the bun is always my favorite.
    My husband grew up on those white castle burgers in the 40's. They still talk about the coupons in the paper and getting 12 of them for the 3 brothers.
    When we were dating we had to go once, it was like everything was an onion. He still loves them to this day. Thank goodness they don't have them in Dallas - at least not close enough to get to comfortably!

  27. With beef and lamb together sounds like a meat heaven:-) Looks great, thanks for sharing:-)
    XX M

  28. ooo...these little lamb burgers look amazing, Valli! :)

  29. barbecued lamb... it can't get any better!!

  30. If you wait long enough the foods you remember from your childhood (that perhaps you were embarrassed to admit you loved) will eventually morph into something chic? - Val, this is so true. It is as if food has become fashionable now, where it goes in cycles.

    Congrats on the award!

  31. Oh wow, I actually let out a groan when I saw this! Your sliders are OUTSTANDING! This recipe is waaaay better than anything in a restaurant. How perfect, too, that I have some lamb in the refridgerator! Congrats on the award, too!

  32. I've been thinking along those same lines with food from childhood. I can't say that many things I ate have turned chic, but I've tried with a few. And I've certainly taken not of the one's you've mentioned as well. It's kinda funny how it can happen, isn't it?

    I really noticed the new trend towards sliders too. And this one looks great!

  33. I went to one White Castle when I was 5 and never went back. There are WCs in this area, but not really convenient. I would have to either drive to a less-than-great neighborhood in the Bronx, or drive over an hour to northern CT. I'll never really know the joy felt by Harold and Kumar (a movie I saw recently for the first time).

    I love lamb though and these look really cool. Why drive to WC when you can make something like this? (at least if you're sober)

  34. I must say Valli that I would take your lamb slider over a White Castle anyday! I never really enjoyed their burgers! They have holes in them! They say it cooks the burger evenly...anyhow...
    Hope all is well your way:)

  35. I'd never heard of these but I'm fascinated. Kind of like a burger canape! I also like the idea of the patties in lettuce - I never much like burger buns...

  36. Congrats Val on your much deserved award :)

    Your spiced sliders look delish :)

    Rosie x


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