Let’s face it, sliders are fun. You get all the flavor of a full-sized burger in an easily handheld and extremely portable package that’s perfect for tailgating, game day parties or any other circumstance where you need to have a lot of food handy without the requirements of plates and flatware. They’re also perfect for kids parties, since sometimes a full burger is too much for a little mouth to handle. With these turkey sausage sliders they can just go back for more if they’re still hungry.
This particular dish is a riff on two recipes. The first was this recipe for Italian Turkey Sliders, written by the lovely and always charming Anne from short Order Mom. The recipe made me want to jump in and make sliders and I’ve been trying to get around to it since I first saw her recipe. The idea for the relish is my personal spin on a burger topping I saw Gordon Ramsay create on his BBC show Kitchen Nightmares. His was for a beef burger, but I thought that the concept would make the perfect condiment for the turkey and I was not disappointed in the slightest.
Of course, fresh basil is out of season at the moment, but I’ve got a bunch of it in the freezer, thanks to this method from Kalyn’s Kitchen. Now I always have at least a semi-fresh supply of basil at my disposal, rather than having to run to the market and pay inflated prices for a few wilted leaves in a plastic package. In this case, the garlic was by far the more inferior of the ingredients, but still totally serviceable nonetheless. And if you’re not in possession of fresh or frozen basil, feel free to use dried basil, but only use half as much. It will still make for a wonderful relish for your turkey sausage sliders.
- 1 lb Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, casings removed
- 1/3 cup Italian style seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 – 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
- 6 oz. roasted red bell peppers
- 4 tbsp basil, chopped fine
- 1 tbsp. tomato paste
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 tsp. sweet paprika
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
- 1/4 cup red wine
- 4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Rolls or other buns of choice
- Place sausage, egg, Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs and a pinch of salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly with hands to combine. Form into 8 individual patties and lay out on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-18 minutes or until set and juices run clear.
- Meanwhile, add tomato and juices to a hot saucepan with a good pinch of salt and cook, stirring frequently for approximately 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir to distribute. Add remaining ingredients and simmer until relish has reduced by 1/2 and appears just a bit thick. Remove from heat.
- Assemble sliders by placing one patty on a split dinner roll or other small roll that has been cut in half horizontally. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of relish over the patty, top and serve immediately.
What I would have done differently had I thought of it at the time:
Next time I’ll probably add a bit of milk or other liquid to the patties. Turkey sausage doesn’t contain much in the way of fat and these were a bit tough, though not so tough that I wouldn’t heartily recommend them to anyone. My wife went back for seconds, which says a lot about the combination and pairing.
Links to other recipes like this: