Vegetarian

Grilled Portobellos Caprese

I am a mushroom fan. I realize not everyone is but, if you are, you have undoubtedly had some version of grilled portobellos. At one point, they were the hot new restaurant item and gradually became pretty ubiquitous. Sometimes grilled portobellos are sublime and sometimes they are mushy and tasteless. It’s all in how you cook them, season them and, in most cases, what you stuff inside them. This is an easy recipe you can whip up and serve as an appetizer and then move onto more serious grilling. Or, if you are like me, it makes a nice, light weeknight meal.

Grilled Portobellos Caprese

from Grill This, Not That

Ingredients

  • 4 large portobello mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil (I used garlic olive oil)
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 8 oz ball fresh mozzarella, chopped
  • 2 tbsp prepared pesto

Caprese ingredients

Directions

Preheat grill over medium-low heat. (I wasn’t cooking anything else, so I just used my gas grill to keep things fast.) Use a spoon to scrape away some of the gills on the underside of the mushrooms. Place the mushrooms in a shallow baking dish and drizzle with oil and vinegar. Season with salt & pepper.

Combine tomatoes, mozzarella, and pesto in a mixing bowl.

Caprese ingredients

It was all I could do not to just eat the filling straight out of the bowl — resist, my friends. The end result it worth it.

Grill the portobellos, gill side down, for 2 minutes.

Grilled Portobellos Caprese

Flip each and fill the cap with the caprese mixture. (I did this off the grill in my original baking dish to make things easier and then moved them back to the grill.)

Grilled Portobellos Caprese

Close the grill and leave them be for 8-10 minutes, until the mushrooms are soft and lightly charred and the mozzarella has melted.

Grilled Portobellos Caprese

Those look gooey good, don’t they? While they are probably best with summer tomatoes, I could see mixing in some quality sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil and getting good results, also. I may go have a leftover portobello now…

Categories: Appetizer, Recipes, Sides, Vegetables, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Fall Apple Salad

The hubby’s side of the family gets together every month for family dinner — usually on Sunday. The cousins run around, play, and argue with each other while the grown ups drink wine and catch up. It’s a pretty nice ritual to have in your life and we’re lucky that the boy (single child that he is) has so many cousins nearby.

What we eat varies but we have started to settle into a routine re: who brings what. My sistah-in-law seems to be staking out desserts and they have been darn good. (Must get on Pinterest.) I started bringing salad awhile back and that is now kind of my thing. I think in a previous post I referred to myself as the salad ninja — which sounds like a game my son would play on his iPhone, come to think of it. The challenge is that twelve salads a year (give or take) means you have to get creative or risk boring everyone. Usually, I just look for whatever is in season at the store and go from there. Right now, my produce obsession is Honeycrisp apples. So that is where I started…

Fall Apple Salad (serves 6-8 as a side)

Ingredients

  • 1 large honeycrisp or other sweet apple
  • 5 oz package pre-washed salad greens (I like half & half)
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced or diced red onion
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts (or walnuts or pecans if you like)

Directions

Fill a small bowl with cold water and squeeze in juice from half a large lemon (or one whole small lemon.)

Lemon bath

Quarter, core and dice your apple and place it in the lemon water. This little bath with keep your apple from getting brown.

Fall Apple Salad

After a few minutes, drain your apples and pat them dry with a paper towel. Layer your salad greens in your bowl and top with sliced onion, crumbled goat cheese, and apples. Grind a little fresh black pepper on top.

Fall Apple Salad

You can also sprinkle the nuts on at this point — I left mine on the side initially due to some nut allergies in the fam. Never good to give someone anaphylactic shock at family dinner. Now, you will want a dressing. You can use a bottled dressing — something light and fruity would be good — but I like to make my own. I used some fancy ingredients from Oil & Vinegar but, recognizing you may not have these on hand, I’ve also given you a foolproof Ina Garten dressing.

Cherry-Lime Vinaigrette 

Whisk together the following ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp lime-flavored grapeseed oil
  • 2 tbsp cherry balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp chocolate balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt, pepper, and onion powder to taste

Barefoot Contessa Vinaigrette

(adapted slightly from Ina Garten’s Cape Cod Chopped Salad recipe)

Whisk together the following ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons good apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil

No pictures of the plated salad, I’m afraid… Too much wine, too little motivation to take out my phone and snap a picture. Given how fast it disappeared, I think it was a hit.

Categories: Brunch, Recipes, Salads, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.