Veganizing Melrose Place, sliders style: Trashy Tuesday

If you've been keeping up with my blog here and there, you'll know that we got rid of our cable a year ago. Now, I'm forced lucky enough to fill my occasional downtime with reruns of shows Netflix has in its line-up; ones I watched in my childhood, when I was supposed to be sleeping.

One of my guiltiest of guilty pleasures: Melrose Place.

Don't worry, folks. Despite the fact that I was only seven years old when the show first aired, I had absolutely know idea what the hell I was watching. After rewatching the first few seasons on Netflix, I realized how utterly naive and innocent I was as a child. All the sexual tension and innuendos were lost on my pre-tween mind. I just watched it because I wasn't supposed to ... and because the cast from 90210 (another show that completely went over my head) appeared on it.

Another thing I missed out on the first time around while watching Melrose Place was how much time the cast spent at Shooters. It's some kind of bar and grill, with pool tables, high tops and lots of beer. Occasionally though, when the cast makes it out in the daytime, we get to see them actually eat food there. And the food they always prefer? Burgers and fries.

Ah, crazy Melrose Place kids, you can sleep with everyone under the sun and swap partners like it's the era of free love and peace, but you can't ever eat anything not on a bun or fried?

So instead of doing a traditional burger and fries, I decided to spice it up some (because that's one thing Melrose wasn't lacking - spice) and make an updated version of Shooter's burger and fries.

And thus, the Jalo-peen-yo business sliders and house chips were born. (I know that's not how you spell jalapeno, FYI, I was trying to be funny and do a play on words, pronounce it likes this: All-up-in-yo. Giggle.

Jalo-peen-yo business sliders and house chips
(Makes 12 sliders and enough chips for four)
Slider Ingredients:
One cup lentils (once you cook them, they double, so it'll end up being like two cups)
1 package of Lightlife "sausage" (it comes in a tube, it helps bind and bring a little extra flavor)
1 wedge of Daiya Havarti jalapeno garlic cheese
1 bulb of fresh garlic, diced (yep, the whole thing folks, at least you'll be vampire free!)
6 fresh jalapenos, diced (you can alter this some to your tastes, six was just the right spicy for us)
1 medium sweet onion, diced
1 TB hamburger seasoning

House chips Ingredients:
3 parsnips, thinly coined
2 carrots, thinly coined
Olive oil (enough to drizzle on chips)
Sea salt and pepper (to taste)

Cook one cup of lentils for 20 minutes, mash up. Knead in sausage. Cube Daiya into quarter-inch pieces (this will melt as you fold it in). Smoosh together. After dicing up your garlic, jalapeno and onion, smoosh these into the mix. Add seasoning. Refrigerate for an hour.

While the "burger" mix is setting up, we can get our "chips" ready. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Thinly coin your parsnips and carrots, the thinner the better. (Ours were a little bit thicker than a nickel, so if you can achieve something thinner you might want to bake for less time).

Spread them out on a baking sheet and drizzle olive oil over them. Sprinkle sea salt and pepper to taste. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, take out, turn them over or "fluff" them up and then bake another 20 minutes, until you see them curling up slightly with crispy edges. You can take these out and let them cool.

We made our sliders a little bigger than our buns, so we rolled them out to about hackey sack size. Once you smoosh them down you want them to be about half-an-inch thick. Cook them in a saute pan with a light coating of olive oil on medium to medium-high heat for three-five minutes on each side. These burgers will form a crispy outside and a cheesier, gooier inside, the perfect combo!

Share with your friends, or, just keep them all to yourself and pretend they're better for you because they're smaller and have lentils in them.

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  1. I love a recipe with a lot of garlic! I wonder if those Melrose characters were eating this much garlic before all of that hooking up. I, too, did not understand the show as a kid!

  2. Your idea is simply genial! I'm a big fan of Melrose Place, even though in Italy it was not so followed. I remeber I missed a date to watch the last episode. I'm going to make you Shooter's burger and fries. Keep veganizing the serial, I guess Michael and Amanda can inspire you for other recipes! Or maybe Allison for a cocktail!

  3. Fresh garlic, onion AND jalapenos! We will be making these!

  4. Like I need an excuse to use a whole wedge of Daiya. Can't wait to try these!

  5. These look eerily like beef burgers! Definitely will be making them.

  6. Ummmm yes! I also re-watched most of Melrose Place a couple months ago through Netflix. Your house chips look so good... way too good for backstabbing Amanda.