• CRAIG BRYAN

Healthy Recipe, Roasted Caprese Portobello Mushrooms



In its most authentic form, insalata Caprese is nothing more than thick rounds of dead-ripe tomatoes and fresh mozzarella attractively arranged on a plate with fresh basil leaves and dressed only with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. This favorite Italian summertime combo also frequently turns up in sandwiches and atop pizzas, as well.


Here those flavors are stuffed into portobello mushroom caps and roasted for a fast and fuss-free, meatless and low-carb entrée. Leftover mushrooms need only a quick zap in the microwave for lunch the next day. This recipe was adapted from the Eating Well website. Serves 4. RECIPE HERE. – Susan Puckett


Ingredients

· 4 large or 8 medium portobello mushrooms (about 1 pound), stems and gills removed (see note)

· 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

· 1 large clove garlic, minced

· ½ teaspoon salt, divided

· 1/2 teaspoon pepper, divided

· 1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes

· 6 to 8 ounces (about 1 cup) fresh mozzarella pearls, patted dry, or cubed fresh mozzarella

· ½ cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves

· 2 teaspoons best-quality balsamic vinegar


Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the oil, the garlic, and ¼ teaspoon each of the salt and pepper.

2. Brush the mushrooms all over with the seasoned oil mixture. Place on a large, rimmed sheet pan and bake until softened, about 10 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the mozzarella, tomatoes, basil, and remaining salt, pepper, and oil.

4. When the mushrooms have softened, remove the pan from the oven and fill the mushroom caps with the tomato mixture.

5. Bake for 12 minutes longer, or until the cheese is fully melted and the tomatoes have wilted.

6. Drizzle each with a little vinegar and serve.


Note: If portobello mushrooms are purchased whole, gently twist off the stems and scrape out the brown gills from the underside of the mushroom caps with a spoon.


Susan Puckett is an Atlanta-based food writer and cookbook author.



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