Everyone loves burgers. At least, that’s what I was told recently by a random friend-of-a-friend who told me off because I said I absolutely hate them. Yes, that’s right. A guy I don’t know was actually in some distress because I, a woman he doesn’t know, think that ground beef is one of the most horrid substances known to humankind.
Mind you, it is a bit shocking for someone who lived in California for two and a half years and worked next door to an In-n-Out Burger to not only express hatred for burgers, but to express particular hatred for that famous target of burger-obsessors everywhere. Well, what can I say? Their fries are disgusting and their burgers are…well, burgers. But I digress.
The point I’m supposed to be making is that, for those ground-beef haters among us, there are (much-lower-fat-than-ground-beef) burger options available. There are chicken burgers, of course. There are veggie burgers. But I’m going to share with you something I discovered while living in California. Something much better than anything they serve at the In-n-Out.
Portobello mushrooms. They’re low in fat and cholesterol, high in protein and vitamin B6 and contain a number of other vitamins and minerals. In short: They’re much better for you than ground beef. Olive oil and balsamic vinegar are also good for you, and make a zesty marinade for your mushroom caps. For a low-fat dinner, these burgers are surprisingly filling!
This recipe is vegetarian, and if you leave out the cheese and use vegan-friendly buns, it becomes vegan.
Grilled Portobello Mushroom Caps
4 Portobello mushroom caps
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste
4 slices provolone cheese
Place the mushroom caps smooth side up, in a shallow dish. In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, oil, basil, oregano, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour over the mushrooms. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes or so, turning twice.
Preheat grill for medium-high heat.
Brush grate with oil. Place mushrooms on the grill, reserving marinade for basting. Grill for 5 to 8 minutes on each side, or until tender. Brush with marinade frequently. Top with cheese during the last 2 minutes of grilling.
Serve in hamburger buns. Recommended toppings include light mayo, alfalfa sprouts, onions, roasted peppers or anything else that strikes your fancy.