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[WATCH] James Beard Finalist Whips Up Cajun-Inspired White Castle Slider

For the love of the slider!—FOODBEAST Geoff and company have set forth on a multi-episodic journey asking esteemed American chefs to produce their own unique “remix” of an American classic, the White Castle Original Slider. Beginning in FOODBEAST’s homebase of Santa Ana, CA, where Chef Linh Nguyen dreamed up a drool-worthy Hatch Chile Slider, the crew has now shipped off to Chicago, IL for their second sandwich stop.

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Tanya Baker, 28, is the Executive Chef of Chi-town’s beautiful Boarding House Restaurant, as well as our gourmet guide to the city, its secrets, and its subtleties. Drawing inspiration for her take on the slider doesn’t seem too difficult, as Baker instinctively reflects on her Korean mother’s passion for cooking while channeling her Louisiana-bred father’s zest for Cajun style.

Growing up, Mama Baker made it a point to cook her family a homemade meal almost every night, inspiring her daughter to soak up all that she could learn. One of the only exceptions in which the family did not eat at home was at White Castle restaurants.

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In this episode, we watch in awe as Tanya combines Chicago-fresh ingredients like shrimp from a favorite local market and spicy Cajun flavors to create her own Original Slider.

Her additions include:

  • A fried boudin cake made from roasted pork shoulder, chicken liver, rice and scallions
  • Shrimp etouffee built from a melted roux, bell peppers, celery, onion, oregano, cayenne pepper, and shrimp stock
  • A seasoned remoulade with mayo, whole grain mustard, cayenne pepper and cornichons (pickles work too!)

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Damn, Geoff uttered at his first glance of the saucy beauty. I’m sure you agree.

Make sure to mark your calendars for the November 8, 22, and December 6 as Geoff continues his journey around the country in New York, Louisville and Columbus. In each city, he's linking up with new chefs for their take on the White Castle slider. All episodes will be available on our YouTube, Facebook, and right here on FOODBEAST.com.

Created in partnership with White Castle