The hubby and I stayed with my family for a long weekend, and we celebrated a kind of combination Mother's Day/Father's Day because we didn't get a chance to spend much time with Mom on Mother's Day.
Mom isn't a big fan of meat, but she loves grilled portabellos, and she especially requested "those big mushrooms" earlier in the week. I decided to make a sort of salad for her so it wasn't just a pile of mushrooms.
I modeled this salad after a dish that she and I once ate at a restaurant in Boston. We had been shopping and site-seeing all day, and just wanted to relax in the hotel restaurant instead of going out. Unfortunately, the hotel restaurant served seafood almost exclusively. Which I don't eat. So I ordered a garden salad and a portabello mushroom appetizer. It was absolutely delicious. Mom even let me eat of it.
That appetizer version also had smoked mozzarella, which was a lovely addition. Mom is iffy on the cheese, so I left it out here. But I highly recommend adding a slice on top of the mushroom and let it melt, like you would a cheeseburger.
Grilled Portabello Salad
Makes 2 small servings or 4 appetizers
4 portabello mushroom caps, wiped clean
4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
Fresh black pepper
6 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar, divided
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. fresh basil, chopped
2 c. arugula, or more if desired
1. Remove stems from portabellos, if necessary. Brush tops and bottoms of caps with olive oil, and sprinkle with rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper.
You want to be more liberal with the oil than I was in this picture. Mom is anti-oil.
2. Grill portabellos over medium heat until they become tender and juicy, about 8-10 minutes. (I actually cooked mine on the upper rack to prevent burning.)
3. Meanwhile, combine chopped tomatoes with garlic and basil. Drizzle with 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
4. For each portabello, spread 1/2 c. or so of arugula on a plate. Top with 1/4 the tomato mixture. Add portabello, cap size up, and drizzle each portabello with 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar.