Cooking On A Budget: Italian Portobello Mushroom Caps

Monday, September 3, 2012

Italian Portobello Mushroom Caps


In Italian, Portobello means "little hat".  I don't know why, but that just brings a smile to my face!
During the summer I made Portobello Pizzas. This recipe is what would musically be the food equivalent of a "variation on a theme".  Therefore they have been reinvented and renamed.
For those of you who are vegetarians this is a perfect lunch or dinner idea.
Cap these off  (no pun intended) with a fresh salad and you have a healthy and satisfying meal. For more than two people, simply double the recipe, or if the caps are very large consider splitting them in half.
What I like about this particular recipe is that you could use up some left over spaghetti sauce from a previous meal and have a makeover meal. It's certainly budget friendly especially if you have some of the ingredients on hand. The flavor is amazing! After I took the picture, I snarfed up half of the big one!

To chiffonade the basil - roll it up and cut it into ribbons.

  • 2 portobello mushrooms - gills removed
  • 3 tbsp. ricotta cheese
  • 2 oz. cream cheese
  • 3 tsp. milk or half and half
  • 3 tbsp. Spaghetti Sauce
  • grated Parmesan cheese
  • fresh or shredded mozzarella
  • fresh basil - chiffonade and minced - replace with dried basil if you want.
  • dried oregano - to taste
  • olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
Preheat your toaster oven or conventional oven to 325 degrees.

  1. Brush away any dirt off the mushrooms. Using a spoon remove the inner gill and with a paring knife whittle down the remainder of the stem. It is best to use one hand to steady the outer part of the mushroom as you are cleaning out the gills.
  2. In a bowl, blend the ricotta, cream cheese and milk until well incorporated. Add in the minced basil and salt and pepper.
  3. Put some of the ricotta cream cheese mixture on the inside bottom of the cap.
  4. Spoon some of the spaghetti sauce on top of the cheese mixture.
  5. Sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese over the sauce, then top with the shredded mozzarella cheese and dried oregano.
  6. Line a baking sheet with some aluminum foil and place the mushrooms on the foil lined pan.
  7. Bake the mushrooms for 25 minutes until a knife can be inserted into the mushroom and the cheese is completely melted.
  8. Turn the broiler on and bake for 5 more minutes until the tops are nicely browned.
  9. Let the mushrooms rest as you would a lasagna or other casserole if you are cutting in half.

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