Portobello Mushroom “Burgers”

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I have to give the credit for this delicious recipe to my friend Kelly.  She shared this awesome recipe with me and it has become a regular in our household.  This is a great way to satisfy a hamburger craving without having to use actual beef, which for many reasons, I generally don’t like very much. This recipe is also REALLY fast to make, taking a total time of 30 minutes or less.

I also must note that I am still teaching myself to love mushrooms. Right now they are in the “kind of like” category for me, so trying this dish that centers around a giant mushroom was quite a jump for me. I was very pleasantly surprised! When cooked in this way, the portobello mushrooms are not slimy and have a surprising meaty flavor to them. Go figure!

Portobello Mushroom “Burgers”

Ingredients:

-One medium-sized portobello mushroom cap per person

-One small sweet onion

– One slice of cheese per burger (any kind, could also be soy cheese)

– One bun for each burger

– Other desired burger toppings, such as tomato, lettuce, mustard, ketchup, pickles, etc.

– Small amount of cooking oil of your choice

Thoroughly rinse each mushroom cap to ensure all soil has been removed.  Use a paring knife to carefully remove the majority of what is left of the mushroom stems.  Pat dry with a towel.

Slice the onion into rings or half-rings.

Heat frying pan or skillet on medium heat with oil.  Do not allow the oil to become so hot that it smokes. If this happens, you know your oil is beginning to produce carcinogens, so this is a good rule of thumb whenever heating oil for any dish.

Toss the onion into the pan and quickly sauté until semi-transparent, then move to the side of the pan in a small pile.

Place the mushroom caps GILL SIDE DOWN into the hot pan.  Allow to cook for 3-5 minutes, or just until heated through.  Continue to tend the onions as needed.  Flip the mushrooms gill side up, and place slices of cheese on each mushroom.  Putting the cheese on the already-cooked gill side allows for the cheese to melt down into the mushroom cap, which is especially delicious.  While still cooking, place a pile of sautéed onion on top of each mushroom/cheese stack. This will help the cheese to melt. Cook for 3-5 more minutes.

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Dress your buns as desired while cooking completes.  It is a good idea to toast your buns because these burgers are juicier than average, and can make a flimsy, cheap bun fall apart under pressure! I also love to find a crusty french bread loaf or artisan bread of the right size and use that instead of buns.  It holds up better, and looks oh-so-much fancier. Place one hot mushroom/cheese/onion pile onto each bun & enjoy!

I usually serve these delicious sandwiches with a platter of finger veggies to share, or if I am feeling ambitious I will make a hot pan of oven fries (look for that recipe in the future!)

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