I wanted a Big City Slider Station the moment I saw Billy Mays hollering about it in between commercials on Nickelodeon. During our daily snuggle-up-and-watch sessions, Daisy and I would ooh and ahh over this little contraption that makes tiny burgers (TINY BURGERS!) in the blink of an eye. I refrained from ordering, but it has been a dream.
Until today, when it became reality. Inside those Sara Lee dinner rolls are little patties of ground beef mixed with Montreal Steak seasoning and Worcestershire sauce, scooped with the special scoop that makes perfectly sized patties every time, and smooshed between the loving plates of the Big City Slider Station my mom, the Infamous Grammy, bought me today at the local household crap store. Of course, buying it locally means I forewent the long list of WAIT, THAT'S NOT ALL that you get when you order by phone, but hey, I also didn't have to wait a moment longer to satisfy my tiny burger urge.
And the verdict? It is not too bad. It only takes a couple of minutes. The edge of a rubber spatula is all you need to lift the burgers out of the pan without making a mess, and you can fill it up and keep right on pressing up TINY BURGERS 'till the meat runs out.
They're not a substitute for grilled burgers--they kind of steam in their own juices, really, as they sizzle in the individual compartments that shape them, thus totally lacking in the Maillard effect that elevates all meat.
Should you be so bold as to follow me down the path to TINY BURGER! nirvana, some thoughts from my first outing:
- Though the instructions don't say to, preheat the base pan and press together for a few minutes before using--I did this while I was mixing seasonings into the meat.
- Drain the liquid that cooks out of the meat in between each batch.
- The instructions say you'll get 14 burgers out of a pound of meat with no ingredients added that would bulk up the mixture, but I got precisely twelve burgers out of slightly over a pound of meat. This is perfect, because there are 12 buns in a bag of dinner rolls.
My next trick with it? Patty melts on cocktail-sized rye. TINY MELTS!