Portobello Burger

portobello-burgerThere are a lot of good veggie burgers on the market, but since I’m very Hobbit-like when it comes to food choices, if I’m presented with a mushroom, I’m going to eat it.

One of the nice things about making portobello burgers is that the patty is already made for you. All you have to do is brush off any lingering dirt, and there you are. I like to rub on a little gluten-free Worcestershire sauce to give it more of a robust, meaty taste. (Make sure it’s GF if you’re sensitive. Worcestershire sauce usually contains wheat.) I do that to my hamburger too, so it’s not just a veggie thing. Then it’s time for my stove-top grill, and it’s done before I can even contemplate getting impatient. Suddenly, there’s a meatless meal that’s still incredibly hearty.

Maybe the best part — there are so many ways in which you can pair this burger! A Sangiovese or Sangio blend would be stellar. I had our previous blend winner, Montoliva’s 2009 Sierra Bella. It’s sold out, but our newest blend winner will soon be available. The 2009 is really coming into its own — lots of good tannin structure, ripe, well-rounded fruit… it was a wonderful pairing with dinner. Or you could have a good Pinot Noir. Its earthiness would compliment your portobello wonderfully. This was actually my first instinct. Of course, if you’re feeling like a good burger deserves a good beer, you can’t go wrong with a porter. Deschutes Black Butte Porter comes to mind… I may need to go make a few more just to play with the pairings.

Portobello Burger with Goat Cheese

serves 1

1 portobello mushroom, stem removed and cap brushed clean
a sprinkle of gluten-free Worcestershire sauce
1.5 oz chevre (I used Laura Chenel Cabecou)
1 leaf of escarole
1 roasted red pepper in olive oil
1 teaspoon horseradish sauce
1/2 a small avocado, sliced (Use the side without the seed so that the rest of the avo can be saved for later. The side with a seed still in it tends to oxidize slower.)
gluten-free hamburger bun (I used Rudi’s.)
extra virgin olive oil
salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

Preheat grill over medium heat. Rub a bit of Worcestershire sauce on the cap of the mushroom, flip over and rub in a bit more. Place bottom-side-down onto the grill and cook for three minutes.
Flip over and place chevre on mushroom. Cover with a lid and cook for another three minutes.
While burger is cooking, drizzle the inside of the hamburger bun with olive oil. Sprinkle with garlic powder and set on the grill to crisp and brown. Flip when you flip the portobello.
Remove bun and burger from heat. Place burger on the lower half of the bun. Spread the horseradish sauce on the inside of the upper bun. Layer burger with roasted pepper and avocado. Sprinkle a bit of coarse salt and grind a bit of black pepper on top. Lay your crisp piece of escarole on top, set on the top bun, grab a bunch of napkins and your drink, and dig in.

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