For the pickled vegetables
- ½ cup peeled and shredded raw carrot
- ½ cup peeled and shredded raw daikon
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- ½ teaspoon sugar
For the burgers
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon lemongrass, minced
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- A few grindings of black pepper
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 6 French rolls (the kind with crunchy crusts and soft insides)
- 1 thinly sliced jalapeño pepper
- A handful of fresh cilantro sprigs, washed and dried
- Good-quality mayonnaise, as needed
- Combine all ingredients for the pickled vegetables; set aside.
- Pound the garlic, lemongrass and pepper together with a mortar and pestle until they form a paste.
- Mix the garlic/lemongrass paste, fish sauce and ground beef together in a medium-size bowl.
- Shape mixture into six mini-burgers.
- Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add oil and cook the mini-burgers to your liking.
- Remove finished burgers from pan; cover and keep warm.
- Remove pan from heat. Add soy sauce, water and sugar. Residual heat from the pan should cause the mixture to immediately sizzle and thicken. If this doesn't happen, return the pan to heat until it does.
- Add cooked burgers and any juices that may have accumulated. Heat through and flip burgers so that they're evenly glazed. Keep warm until ready to serve.
- Then, to obtain a more burger-like proportion of meat and bread in the sliders, slice each roll crosswise into thirds. This should leave you top and bottom "buns" of roughly the same size, as well as an extra middle piece. Put aside the middle pieces and make croutons with them later. Heat the tops and bottoms in a low oven.
- Spread the insides of the warmed roll halves with mayonnaise. Place a few jalapeño slices on the bottom half of each roll.
- Put a warm mini-burger on top of the jalapeños, top with pickled vegetables and cilantro, then the top half of the roll. Serve immediately.