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If you want to serve something to the vegetarians in your life that will make the meat eaters drool, Pin this right now. It’s an absolute star of a meatless entree that is no way an after-thought or an apology.
As I was preparing this, and especially when I sat down to take the pic and then eat, I worried about how much there was going on between the buns. Mushrooms, filling (feta, roasted red peppers and sun-dried tomatoes), grilled onions, basil-mayo AND arugula. If this were an outfit on Project Runway, Tim Gunn would say “that’s a lot of look.” But one bite was enough to dispel my skepticism. It all works and every flavor is important and distinct. I’m not sure how it works, it just does.
You are instructed to use the extra mushroom marinade to brush on the onion slices but I found this nearly impossible since there was very little marinade left and what was left clung to the ziploc bag for dear life. As a remedy, I noted in the instructions below to reserve 1 tablespoon before adding the mushrooms.
With everything going on on the grill (in addition to the mushrooms and onions I had eggplant from another recipe) I couldn’t get my act together to also grill the buns. So they went into the good old fashioned toaster and life went on.
Mediterranean-Style Portobello Burgers from Master of the Grill
- 4 portobello mushroom caps (4-5" in diameter) gills removed
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- salt and pepper
- 4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled (1 cup)
- 1/2 cup jarred roasted red peppers, patted dry and chopped
- 1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, patted dry and chopped
- 1/2 mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- 4 (1/2" thick) slices red onion
- 4 kaiser rollls, split
- 1 ounce (1 cup) baby arugula
- Using tip of paring knife, cut 1/2" crosshatch pattern on tops of mushroom caps, 1/16" deep. Combine oil, vinegar, garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a 1-gallon zipper-lock bag (reserve 1 tablespoon to brush on onion slices). Add mushrooms, seal bag, turn to coat, and let sit for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour.
- Combine feta, red peppers, and sun-dried tomatoes in bowl. Whisk mayonnaise and basil together in separate bowl. Push 1 toothpick horizontally through each onion slice to keep intact while grilling (I threaded my onion slices onto metal skewers).
- FOR A CHARCOAL GRILL: open bottom vent completely. Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal briquettes (6 quarts). When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour evenly over grill. Set cooking grate in place, cover and open lid vent completely. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes.
- FOR A GAS GRILL: turn all burners to high, cover and heat grill until hot, about 15 minutes. Turn all burners to medium-high.
- Clean and oil cooking grate. Remove mushrooms from marinade. Brush onions all over with the 1 tablespoon of reserved marinade. Place onions and mushrooms, gill side up, on grill. Cook (covered if using gas) until mushrooms have released their liquid and are charred on first side, 4-6 minutes. Flip mushrooms and onions and continue to cook (covered if using gas) until mushrooms are charred on second side, 3-5 minutes.
- Transfer onions to platter; remove toothpicks. Transfer mushrooms to platter, gill side up, and divide feta mixture evenly among caps, packing down with your hand. Return mushrooms to grill, feta side up, and cook, covered, until heated through, about 3 minutes.
- Return mushrooms to platter and tent with aluminum foil. Grill rolls cut sides down until lightly charred, about 1 minutes. Spread basil-mayonnaise on roll bottoms and top each with 1 mushroom and 1 onion slice. Divide arugula evenly among burgers, then cap with bun tops. Serve.
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