Real estate and insurance agent Edgar Waldo “Billy” Ingram teamed up with cook Walter Anderson to open the first White Castle hamburger stand in Wichita, Kansas, in 1921. Anderson is credited with having invented the modern hamburger: It was his idea to cook patties of ground meat on the griddle, push a mess of diced onions into the beef, top it with a pickle slice, and serve it on a soft yeast bun. His creation’s come to be known as a slider, but you can just call it deliciousness. This recipe pays homage to Anderson’s burger, which is quicker and easier to execute than the modern method used by White Castle.
Game plan: This recipe is made on a griddle. If you don’t have one, you can use an electric skillet, a large cast-iron pan, or a nonstick frying pan, though you may have to work in batches.
Mix together meat, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. Shape mixture into 9 (2-1/2-inch-wide) patties and brush both sides of each patty with vegetable oil.
Set a griddle over two burners and heat over medium heat. When the griddle’s hot, place patties about 1 inch apart and sprinkle onion evenly over top. Press firmly on patties with a spatula to push onion into meat and flatten patties to 1/4-inch thickness. Cook until patties start to brown and release some juice, about 3 minutes.
Flip patties and place bottom bun halves, cut side down, on top. Place top halves of buns on bottom halves to rewarm, and cook burgers until they are firm and juices run clear, about 1 minute more. Remove from heat, top each patty with a pickle slice, and close with top bun.
Beverage pairing:Bitburger Pils, Germany. These slick sliders, which tempt us to eat them quickly, are best paired with something thirst quenching, like a crisp, easy-drinking beer. The mildly bitter flavor of a classic German pilsner like this one, coupled with its light, brisk body, make a pleasing foil for the sliders.