Any good bistro has good bistro burgers. And there are as many variations as there are bistros. My first favorite bistro burger was loaded with lettuce, fried egg, bacon, and a whole bunch of other things. Version 2.0 of the bistro burger takes a little simpler approach, combining delicious grilled mushrooms and onion with a fantastic sauce. The sauce absolutely pairs beautifully with the burger, and is so good that I doubled the recipe. I’m a casual fan of horseradish, which means it can easily become too strong for me if there is too much of it in a dish. The amount of horseradish in the sauce on these bistro burgers was just right for me. The same sauce now finds its way onto wraps and sandwiches in our household. It’s just that good.
At first I thought maybe I just loved these spicy grilled mushrooms so much because I hadn’t grilled mushrooms in a while. Or maybe it was because of the full moon. But no, it was because these are now officially my favorite mushrooms. They have a perfect light Asian flavor, with a little vinegar tang and, as with everything I make, a little spicy kick. My goodness they were just delicious. I used cremini mushrooms, also known as baby portobellos. You can use any mushrooms you like, even mix a few different kinds in. Just remember that the smaller ones will cook faster, so you might have to move them away from the hottest part of your grill before the bigger ones get done.
The cooking rack for the Char-Broil Big Easy is a definite must-have accessory for the cooker in my book. I use it to cook everything from French fries to nachos, to yep, herb roasted potatoes. I often remove the racks themselves and add 9″ pie pans (you can leave in the racks and use 8″ or smaller pie pans). Then I’m off and running. Everything comes out great. And since I have more than one Big Easy I can cook a main dish in one (like fantastic roasted chicken) and a side or two in the other! Score! I used smaller baby portabella mushrooms but you can use any mushrooms you wish, even mixing up types. Just keep in mind that larger mushrooms or mushrooms with thicker caps might take a bit longer to cook. I like to cook my mushrooms cap-side down so that the juices stay inside the cap, keeping the mushrooms nice and moist.
In a large bowl, toss mushrooms with the remaining ingredients.
Transfer mushrooms to the Big Easy. For best results, use a Big Easy Cooking Rack. I remove the racks and use 9" pie pans, but you can use the racks by themselves. Make sure the stem-side is pointing upwards.
Place into the Big Easy and cook 20 minutes or until just tender.
I’ve really been enjoying my Nesco Snackmaster Pro dehydrator. I’m always looking for more things to dry, taking advantage of anything in season or fresh. I recently grabbed a few pounds of oyster and shiitake mushrooms with the goal of drying them for later use in stir-fries or soups. I found that drying them is incredibly easy. Rinse, dry, slice (if you want) and dry. Done. I store the dehydrated mushrooms in resealable baggies or Mason jars. Whenever I need them I just grab them and toss them into the dish. If the recipe I’m using them in doesn’t contain a lot of liquid that can be used to re-hydrate the mushrooms I’ll first toss them into some warm water for a few minutes.
If you decide to slice your mushrooms don’t cut them too small. They shrink a lot as they dry, and if you cut them too small they will crumble too easily and can fall thru the holes in the trays on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro. I prefer to keep the mushrooms as whole as possible. You never know how you might use the mushrooms in the end. You can always cut the larger pieces later, but you can’t make the smaller pieces bigger!
This may be one of my favorite summertime vegetable grilling ideas. It doesn’t really matter what vegetables you use, either. Just grab whatever vegetables are in season at the store, roast them on the grill, then spoon them into large mushroom caps. Add a bit of seasoning, a little cheese, place onto a cedar plank over a hot fire, and in no time at all you’ll have a great side dish.
Grilling on cedar planks can be a sensitive subject. Some folks really don’t care for it, others, like me, love it. I like the light flavor the planks can add (I tend to not get my planks super smokey before adding my food). And it looks cool. And it makes the deck area smell great. I have to admit that I’m cheap, so I re-use planks as much as I can. As long as you don’t burn them too much on one side, you can get a few uses from them.
I made a nice big ole batch of Buffalo chicken on my Char-Broil Big Easy the other day. Nothing beats the kick of moist, shredded, Buffalo chicken. Besides using the chicken in sandwiches, on pizzas, and in wraps, I also used it in a wonderful stuffing for mushrooms. Although I ended up serving this as a main dish using large mushrooms, the stuffing is perfect in smaller button mushrooms, served up as bite-sized appetizers. They’re full of creamy cheese, celery, carrot and onion, all with the kick of Buffalo wing sauce. Of course, you don’t have to make Buffalo chicken on the grill to make these delightful mushrooms. Any ole Buffalo chicken recipe will do, like my slow cooker version!
These mushrooms were stuffed with what may be the perfect combination of ingredients. Herby pesto. Sweet acidic tomatoes. Crunchy Panko breadcrumbs. And cheese. Parmesan and Asiago. I made the mushrooms on my Char-Broil Big Easy, but you can do them in the oven (at 350 F) or on your gas or charcoal grill just as easily. I used medium-sized portobello mushrooms, but if you want to serve these as appetizers you can use mini-bellos instead. They’ll disappear off the plate, that’s for sure! If you don’t have sun-dried tomatoes you can substitute diced roasted red bell peppers or pimentos. I really liked the nuttiness of Asiago cheese, but if you find it to be too strong, a nice shredded Mozzarella will work just fine instead.
I’m finding that stuffed mushrooms are becoming more and more a regular part of my grill outs. They’re incredibly easy to make, and you can stuff them with just about anything, from in-season fresh vegetables to this pork chorizo. The filling has a great spiciness to it, reminiscent of a southwestern Sloppy Joe (I love Mexican chorizo), with a creamy cheese topping and a little hint of cilantro. You can cook these mushrooms directly on the grill, or my favorite, cook them on pre-soaked cedar planks for a great cedar flavor and aroma.
I use large portobellos. Our local grocery store sells them in 2- and 4-packs as ‘grill caps’. They’re the perfect size for 2 or 4 people each, depending on what you use for stuffing. I don’t like to over-char my cedar planks, which increases the aroma and flavor of the cedar. I like just a hint of cedar. Just something different.