Click to enlarge photo
Portobello mushrooms are a great way to get vegetarian whiners to shut up. It’s made as a sandwich here, but makes for an excellent substitute for burger patties. It’s freezing cold outside right now so I’m going to give instructions for the oven, but these mushrooms can easily be grilled with a little olive oil. The salad was just something that I happened to make at the time.
Portobello Mushroom Open-face Sandwich
- Olive Oil
- Cheese of your choice
- Portobello Mushrooms
- A nice crusty bread
Turn your oven on to 450 degrees or so. While the oven is heating up, clean off the Portobello mushrooms. The food snobs out there will say that you should use a damp cloth to wipe them clean so that the flavor doesn’t come off – I just wash them.
Pat the mushrooms dry and place them stem side up on a lightly oiled tray. You’ll want to put a couple of bits of butter in here for added richness and finish off with a little cracked pepper. Once done, place slices of cheese on top and cook it in the oven. It’ll take about 10-15 minutes to cook the mushrooms so while you’re doing that you can make the salad.
Star-fruit Spinach and Avocado Salad
- Baby Spinach
- Star Fruit
- Ripe Avocado
- Crushed Walnuts
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
I went with 1:1:1 proportions with regards to the Spinach, Star Fruit and Avocado, but feel free to use whatever you want. The Avocado really adds to the flavor of the salad due to its richness so you might not want to skimp on that.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret on how to cut ripe Avocados quickly. First, cut them in half length wise. You’ll end up with two halves – one with a seed firmly embedded in it and the other without. The quickest and easiest way to remove that seed is to take a chef knife that you don’t particularly care for and with a swinging motion, embed the blade in the seed. Twist and pull.
You don’t really want to use your prized knives to do that as the torquing of the blade isn’t the best for the knife especially if the blade is very thin and brittle.
Once that’s done, score the insides and squeeze the contents into your dish/bowl, whatever. This allows you to control the size of the pieces and prevents you from having to de-peel each sliced piece.
Slice up the Star-fruit and toss it together with the Spinach, Avocado and Chopped Walnuts (I use a handful or so). Drizzle with Olive Oil and plate it up.
The salad should have taken you about 10 minutes to make, so you can now toast the bread. Just butter it up (or not if you’re health conscious) and bake it in the oven with the mushrooms.