Portobello mushrooms have not always been such a go-to food of mine as they are now. Perhaps I didn’t quite know what to do with them to bring the best out in them. Learning that they are a “superfood” motivated me to find a way to make them irresistibly delicious and incorporate them into my repertoire of veggie dishes. The meaty and juicy texture of a portobello mushroom cap satiates any cravings for something brown and shaped like a filet mignon or the desire to cut your entree with a knife!
The nutritional benefits of portobello mushrooms are many: 1 cup of sliced portobello contains only 42 calories, 1 gram of fat, 5 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, and only 12 grams of sodium. You can also get 31% of your daily selenium, 30% of your daily copper, 18% of your daily phosphorus and potassium, in addition to iron, magnesium, manganese, calcium, zinc, niacin and riboflavin. Yes the list goes on—they also provide pantothenic acid, folate, choline, B6 and B1 and various antioxidants. Unlike many other foods, the antioxidant levels are not destroyed by the cooking process.
Whatever you’d like to call them—portobellos and portobellas and criminis—they are all the same thing, except that criminis are the smaller, younger version of the mature portobellos, which are about 4 – 6″ in diameter.
OK, so you know why you should be eating them! The simplest way to make these little powerhouses is to marinate them and roast them in the oven…
- 3 or 4 portobello mushrooms
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic (I like even more)
- 1 chopped shallot
- salt and pepper to taste
- chopped fresh herbs: parsley, thyme, basil, rosemary (if not fresh, dried will do)
- 1) Clean mushroom with a damp cloth and remove stems. You can keep the stems and chop them up and cook them, if desired. Place mushrooms in a ziploc bag.
- 2) In a measuring cup, combine marinade ingredients and whisk together.
- 3) Pour the marinade in the ziploc bag and gently distribute it in and around the mushrooms. Lay flat for about 30 minutes to an hour. to even 2 hours. You can even leave them in the marinade for 6 hours if you want! Flip the bag occasionally.
- 4) With tongs, gently remove mushrooms and lay in a baking sheet sprayed with non-stick oil.
- 5) Roast in an oven of 400 degrees for 10 minutes and then flip and roast for another 10 minutes.
- 6) Serve as is, entree or side dish, using any leftover marinade as a sauce or slice into strips.
- 7) Drizzle with Balsamic vinegar reduction or an oil & vinegar dressing.
Portobello mushrooms are very versatile—there are so many ways to use them in juicy, meaty, delicious ways:
1) stuff or sprinkle with bread crumbs and nutritional yeast
2) stack with slices of eggplant and roasted peppers
3) drizzle with vegan pesto sauce
4) make it the “burger” in a toasted bun with avocado, lettuce, tomato, pickles and thousand island dressing
5) top with chopped tomatoes and melted shredded vegan mozzarella cheese
6) slice them and top a salad of mixed greens and arugula
7) toss with sautéed kale or string beans
8) put them on the barbecue grill but they give off some juices so be aware
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