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Hall of Fame Buffalo Sliders

Canton, Ohio is the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and when I think of great football games, I think of great tailgating parties! Typical tailgater's indulge in foods such as sausage, chili, burgers, and wings. While these are all good on their own, my sliders play on combining two of my tailgating favorites: burgers and wings. Small enough to be enjoyed while socializing, and with a definite buffalo wing kick, these sliders deserve their own Hall of Fame induction!

Ingredients 

2 ribs celery, diced

1/4 c. diced red onion

2 oz. crumbled bleu cheese

1/4 c. mayonnaise

1/4 c. sour cream

1/2 c. plain yogurt

1/2 tsp.freshly-ground black pepper

2 lb. ground chuck (80% lean)

4 oz. crumbled bleu cheese

2 tsp. caraway seeds

1 tsp. black pepper

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 c. thinly grated carrot

2 T. plus 2 c. Frank's Red Hot (divided)

11/2 stick butter

12 T. mayonnaise

2 T. caraway seeds

12 small (1-1/2" diameter) sourdough rolls, split

leafy tops from 6 ribs celery

Instructions 

Light grill and pre-heat to medium heat.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine diced celery, diced red onion, 2 oz. bleu cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream, plain yogurt, and black pepper. Set aside to allow flavors to marry.

In a large bowl, combine ground chuck, 4 oz. bleu cheese, 2 tsp. caraway seeds, 1 tsp. black pepper, 1 1/2 tsp. salt, grated carrot, and 2 T Frank's Red Hot. Combine ingredients lightly with your hands until all is incorporated into the ground chuck. Form into 12 "slider-sized" (2" diameter) patties. Be sure to form a "divot" in the center of each burger to prevent burgers from forming a meatball shape when cooked. When grill is hot, put sliders on the grill and cook for about 2 minutes per side.

While burgers are cooking, put 2 c. Frank's Red Hot and 11/2 sticks butter in a medium-sized, disposable aluminum pan. Set pan on the grill and allow butter to melt. Stir.

In small bowl, combine 12 T. mayonnaise and 2 T. caraway seeds. Spread this mixture on cut sides of rools.

When burgers are done, transfer them to the aluminum pan containing the Red Hot mixture, and turn the burner below the pan to low. Baste burgers to be sure that they all get covered with the Red Hot mixture.

On hot side of grill, place rolls, cut-side down to toast - approx. 1 - 2 min.

To serve, place Red Hot-basted burger on bottom of toasted roll, top with about 1 T. of the bleu cheese-yogurt mixture, leafy celery tops, roughly torn, and place top of roll atop it all. Cheer for your favorite team, and enjoy!