I don’t know about you, but I am seeing more and more creative recipes using mushrooms. These little guys (or big guys, sometimes) are jam-packed with powerful nutrients, and they really are incredibly versatile. And, according to hieroglyphics, the ancient Egyptians believed that they were the plant of immortality. Now, I am not sure if the ancient Egyptians ate them, bathed in them, or balanced them on their heads to derive these magical properties. But I’d far rather eat my mushrooms, thank you very much. I love mushrooms in almost any form: fresh, sautéed, grilled, pureed into soup. If you ask me to bathe in them or balance them on my head, well…then we might have a problem.
Loving them as I do, I am delighted to be a part of the KitchenPlay Progressive Party with the Mushroom Council. And thankfully, neither party asked me to bathe in them or balance them on my head. They asked me to create a salad recipe for the Swap It or Top It promotion. The idea being that mushrooms can be worked in to almost any recipe, and are a great way to swap out some or all of the meat to create a whole new dish.
That definitely gave me some food for thought. I could easily create a salad featuring mushrooms, but I liked this “swapping it” idea and I wanted to play that up. And these days, you don’t see too many plain Caesar salads; they are often topped with grilled chicken or fish. So why not grilled mushrooms? Big Portobello mushrooms are perfect for this, as they are thick and juicy and have a meaty quality to them. They really took the Caesar to a whole new level. I highly recommend making your own Caesar dressing. What a taste difference! But you can used bottled too, if you’d prefer.
And you can join the Swap It or Top It event too, and have a chance to win $5000. Whether you top your favourite burger with grilled mushrooms or swap out the bread or the meat with a big Portobello, you can enter your recipe at Mushroominfo.com.
Join us also for a fun Swap It or Top It Twitter Party tomorrow night (June 25th, 7pm EDT), where you can also win some fun prizes.
This post was sponsored by The Mushroom Council and Kitchen Play. All thoughts, recipes and photographs are my own.
Grilled Portobello Caesar Salad – Low Carb and Gluten-Free
- ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 large anchovy filets
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 cloves garlic coarsely chopped
- Juice of one lemon
- Zest of one lemon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- ½ cup olive oil
- 4 large Portobello mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 large heads romaine lettuce washed and dried
- 4 oz Parmesan cheese grated or shaved
- For the dressing, place Parmesan, anchovies, egg yolks and garlic in a blender or food processor and process until it forms a thick paste.
- Add lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and pepper and process until combined.
- Slowly add olive oil until dressing is well mixed and emulsified.
- For the salad, preheat grill to medium heat and brush Portobellos with olive oil, then sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. Place on grill, top-down, for about 5 minutes, then turn over and grill for another 2 to 3 minutes. Slice thinly.
- Meanwhile, tear romaine leaves and divide among four plates. Sprinkle with grated or shaved parmesan. Top with sliced Portobello mushrooms and serve with dressing on the side.