It doesn’t get more earthy than mushrooms! Extremely underrated when it comes to their nutritional makeup, they are essentially, nutrient powerhouses. Mushrooms are rich in antioxidants, vitamin D, minerals and beta-glucans which have been shown to enhance immunity and improve the body’s ability to metabolize fat and sugar.
Behold the mighty Portobello! With it’s majestic looking appearance, it’s no wonder portobellos are the vegetable replacement of choice for meat in many dishes. Believe it or not, that satisfying rich, deep, earthy taste you get from mushrooms actually describes the fifth basic taste sensation (after sweet, salty, bitter and sour) called “UMAMI”. Umami (pronounced 00-MAH-me) is the Japanese word for DELICIOUS!
I became inspired by the large umbrella-like shape of these portobellos I found the other day at the market and I thought they would make a unique and healthier base for pizza toppings. I paired the pizzas with a simple salad for a light dinner this weekend. The weather was just perfect for firing up the grill and dining outdoors. The meaty thick texture of the mushroom makes it easy to grill and brings out that earthy “umami” goodness! You could even get smaller portobellos and serve them as adorable little appetizers. Remember, fresh quality ingredients go a long way. I hope you enjoy!
- 4 medium to large portobello mushrooms (stems and gills removed)
- 4 large ripe tomatoes (seeded and chopped)
- 4 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese (unsalted)
- 1 tsp. dried Italian herbs
- 1 garlic clove (chopped)
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil + more for drizzling
- ¼ tsp kosher salt + dash for seasoning mushrooms
- dash pepper
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a medium sauté pan.
- Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add tomatoes and Italian herbs to pan and season with salt.
- Cook tomato sauce for about 15 min, stirring occasionally and set aside.
- In meantime, heat grill to medium heat.
- Lightly salt and pepper mushrooms and gently rub the remaining olive oil over them.
- Grill for about 3 min per side.
- Transfer mushrooms to a baking sheet or platter.
- Add a few spoonfuls of the tomato sauce and one large slice of fresh mozzarella cheese.
- Allow cheese to melt slightly. Top with basil and drizzle with a few drops of olive oil.