pepperoni pizza sliders

Burger meets pizza. Need we say more?

1 clove garlic
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/4 cup finely chopped pepperoni (packed) 
2 pounds ground beef
1 cup homemade (or prepared) pasta sauce
6 slices mozzarella cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
6 small sourdough hamburger rolls, split

  1. Roughly chop garlic. Place a good pinch of salt over top of garlic and, using back of a knife, smash garlic into a paste. Place in a large bowl. Season with pepper and red pepper flakes. Add oregano, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and pepperoni and mix to combine. Add ground beef and gently combine. Loosely form ground beef into 6 sliders, taking care not to overwork meat. Using your thumb, create a small indentation in middle of each patty (this allows them to cook evenly and helps them keep their shape). Season indented side of each slider with salt and pepper.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. 
  3. Place sliders on grill, indented sides down, and cook, with-out touching or flattening them, 4-5 minutes. When slider releases easily from grill, flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until almost done. Turn off one side of grill and move sliders to that side. Baste each slider with some pasta sauce, then top each one with equal amounts of cheese. Cover and cook until cheese melts, another 1-2 minutes. Baste one last time with pasta sauce, cover and allow sauce to warm through, another 30 seconds. Remove sliders and loosely tent with aluminum foil.
  4. Drizzle cut side of rolls with some olive oil and season each with salt and pepper. Place rolls cut side down on grill and cook until grill marks just form, 1-2 minutes. Flip and cook for another 15 seconds. Remove rolls and place on a large serving platter. Place sliders on rolls and serve.

Makes 6 sliders.