|Stuffed Portobello Mushroom Burgers with Crunchy Winter Salad|
We're trying to eat seriously healthy.....seriously....it's a challenge at our house. I love to cook and my husband loves to eat. Well, that's not exactly fair, since I love to cook and eat. As part of our quest to eat healthier, last night I made Stuffed Portobello Mushroom Burgers with Crunchy Winter Salad, and it was delicious as well as being seriously healthy! ( Here's my other portobello recipe ) And, here's the best part, everything I made took me about 30 minutes AND it was pretty economical. Make your salad and set it aside, then start with the stuffing and cooking up the mushrooms. They were really, really good, even my meat loving husband thought so. He admitted to being full, in spite of no potatoes, no real dressing on the salad and LOTS of veggies. Score!
Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
2 portobello mushrooms
olive oil and balsamic vinegar
1 tsp butter
1 medium onion, sliced
2 - 3 cloves of minced garlic
2 handfuls fresh spinach
1 link turkey Italian sausage**
1 slice Alpine Lace reduced fat Swiss Cheese
1 roasted red pepper, cut in half (from a jar is fine)
2 burger buns, your favorite, I recommend whole grain or "white/wheat"
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
First prepare your stuffing: In a small non-stick frying pan, melt the butter with a few drops of olive oil. Add the sliced onion and cook until lightly browned but still slightly firm. Remove the onion to a bowl. Slit the casing of the sausage with a sharp knife and push out the meat into the same frying pan (discard the casing). Cook over medium, stirring and breaking up the meat, until the sausage is crumbled and brown. Add the garlic, and the onions to the pan along with the spinach. Sprinkle with a little Kosher salt and fresh pepper, stirring to incorporate the spinach. Cook for 1 minute. Cover and set aside. The heat will continue to wilt the spinach.
Wipe the mushrooms clean with a damp paper towel. Using a spoon, remove the stems and most of the gills from them. A spoon works well for removing the gills.
Preheat a grill pan over medium high heat. Brush the mushroom caps with a little olive oil. Put them on the grill and cover them loosely. Cook 5 minutes on each side, watching them so they don't burn. Use a sturdy spatula for this, so the mushrooms remain whole. You can press them down slightly so that they maintain good contact with the pan, but don't break them if you help it.
Place the mushrooms on a cookie sheet or baking pan and fill them with the sausage/onion/spinach mixture. Place 1/2 of roasted red pepper on top of each one. Put them into the oven for 5 - 7 minutes. Add 1/2 slice of the cheese to each mushroom during the last minute of cooking. While the stuffing heats through,, grill the buns in the same pan you used to cook the mushrooms, over medium to high heat. You kind of want to toast them a bit. Press them down gently with the back of the spatula so that they crisp up and get sturdy -- the mushrooms are heavy and juicy! Top the toasted roll with your stuffed mushroom. Drizzle with a little balsamic vinegar. Serve with Crunchy Winter Salad, recipe below! Enjoy!!
**Cooks Note: To make this meal totally vegetarian and even healthier, eliminate the turkey sausage from the stuffing and crumble in some tofu or the veggie sausage crumbles that you find in the freezer section of the grocery store. OR add more spinach or some sauted, finely chopped zucchini. I bet it would still be yummy. DON'T eliminate the balsamic vinegar, though, it really makes a difference!
Crunchy Winter Salad
1 small Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped
2 ribs celery, washed, halved and chopped
1 small carrot or 2 baby carrots, grated
1 ring canned pineapple, cut into small pieces (get the kind packed in it's own juice, not syrup)
1 - 2 thin slices red or purple onion, cut into small pieces
zest from 1/2 a lemon
1 oz. coarsely chopped walnuts
1 T. pineapple juice (from the can is fine)
1 tsp. lemon juice
Mix all the above together in a bowl. Serve it over:
2 handfuls washed and chopped romaine lettuce
2 handfuls washed and stemmed spinach, torn up a little
This salad is crunchy and really, really good! Any kind of nuts would probably work, but I was thinking along the lines of a Waldorf salad, sorta' deconstructed!