Portabello Mushrrom & Goat Cheese Burger


4 fresh Portobello mushrooms, about 3 oz. each 2 red or yellow bell peppers, 6-8 oz. each 2 yellow squashes, ends trimmed, about 6 oz. each 1 large ripe tomato, about 8 oz. Half a cup of EVOO olive oil; 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot Half teaspoon Monterey Bay Sea Salt Quarter teaspoon freshly ground pepper 3 tablespoons traditional balsamic vinegar 8 slices soft-crusted French or Italian bread, each half an inch thick, or soft rolls 8 oz. fresh goat cheese 12-16 fresh basil leaves



Remove the stems from the mushrooms. Cut the bell peppers in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and flatten the peppers with the palm of your hand. Cut the squashes lengthwise into half-inch-thick slices. Cut the tomato crosswise into half-inch-thick slices. Put the vegetables in a lock-top bag large enough to hold them.

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, rosemary, shallot, salt, and pepper. Add this mixture to the bag of vegetables. Allow the vegetables to marinate in room temperature for 10-15 minutes.

Directions: Remove the vegetables from the bag. Grill them directly over medium heat, turning once, until tender. The mushrooms will take about 12-14 minutes, the bell peppers will take 10-12 minutes, the squashes 8-10 minutes, and the tomato 3-4 minutes. Start the mushroom face down so that when you flip it the juices fall to the center of the mushroom. Transfer to a large platter. Drizzle the grilled vegetables with the traditional balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper for taste.

Evenly spread the goat cheese onto one side of a bread slice. Note- the cheese can also be melted on the mushroom while grilling. Build the sandwiches with the grilled vegetables, interspersing the basil leaves as you build. Place the remaining bread slices on top. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 4 servings.

Wine notes: A Sangiovese or young Zinfandel with fruit to burn, but not much in the way of oak or tannin to complicate matters, would be ideal here.

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