Friday, February 8, 2013

Trashy Portobello Mushroom Burger

You win some and you lose some.

That happens in the lab when you are trying to synthesize molecules or express plasmids or purify proteins. Sometimes things work like you plan, sometimes they don't.

Same thing happens when you are in the kitchen... especially when you are dreaming up a recipe yourself. Last week I made the grilled veggies and hummus wrap using portobello mushrooms. Since I had purchased a pack of 5 mushrooms, I had a few to play around with. I planned out two dishes -- stuffed portobellos and portobello burgers.

I was thinking I would saute up some sweet potato and peppers, throw in a little seasoning and then stuff that into my mushrooms. But then I ran into a problem, the sweet potato in my pantry had gone bad :( So I searched around my kitchen and found some frozen veggies, frozen northern beans and homemade pasta sauce. I figured I could make up a little concoction of those things, stuff it into the mushrooms and top with a little cheese as a play on a pasta-less pasta primavera. I made that last night but I really wasn't sold; it was okay but not blog-worthy.

Mushroom 1. Julie 0.

The second planned dish (which actually happened before the first planned one) was the portobello burgers. I did a twist on a barbecue bacon burger topping them with caramelized onions, cheddar cheese, barbecue sauce, and, of course, BACON. I'm calling it a trashy burger because here I am taking a traditionally meatless meal and trashing it up with bacon. You don't have to do it, but I would recommend it. This one is certainly a win.

If you are keeping score, that's Mushroom 1. Julie 1. It's a draw. We will have a rematch Mr. Portobello, you can count on it.

Trashy Portobello Mushroom Burger
2 portobello mushrooms, stems twisted out
3 tsp extra virgin olive oil, separated
salt and pepper
1 medium yellow onion, sliced
3 tbsp barbecue sauce (your favorite kind)
2 slices sharp cheddar cheese
3 pieces of bacon, cooked to your desired likeness, each cut in half, optional
2 hamburger buns

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Clean the mushrooms with a damp paper towel. Drizzle 1 tsp of oil on the top of each and rub in. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place cap up on a baking sheet and bake for 7-8 minutes, flipping over halfway throug, until the mushrooms are cooked. Turn on broiler.

Meanwhile, heat the other 1 tsp of oil in a pan over medium high heat. Add the onion slices and stir to coat. Decrease the heat to medium and cook the onions until caramelized, stirring occasionally, about 10-12 minutes. 

Once the mushrooms are cooked, slather 1 tbsp of barbecue sauce on top of each. Top with cheese slices. Broil for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is melted completely.

Assemble the burger by spreading another 1/2 tbsp barbecue sauce on the bottom bun, topping with 3 half slices of bacon, layering the mushroom and half the caramelized onions and then the top bun.

Grab yourself a napkin because it is guaranteed to be messy!

Serves 2.

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