Saturday, June 19, 2010

Grilled Portobello, Gruyère, and Zucchini Sandwiches with Smoky Pesto

In the mood to grill dinner tonight, McHubby and I wanted something other than regular burgers. We adapted this recipe to include grilled portobello mushrooms for a cross between a veggie burger and a grilled cheese sandwich, but you'll never miss the meat! The bread is perfectly toasted and crisp, and the grilled vegetables are a nice smoky contrast against the creamy, melted cheese.

Adapted from: Grilled Gruyère-and-Zucchini Sandwiches with Smoky Pesto, Food and Wine

1 packed cup basil leaves
1 large garlic clove, coarsely chopped
½ teaspoon hot smoked paprika
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
4 portobello mushroom caps
One 8-ounce zucchini, cut into 4 lengthwise slices
4 multi-grain sandwich thins, split
4 ounces Gruyère cheese, cut into 8 thin slices

In a mini food processor, combine the basil, garlic and paprika and process until finely chopped. With the machine on, gradually pour in the 3 tablespoons of olive oil until blended. Season the pesto with salt.

Light a grill. Brush the portobello mushrooms and zucchini slices with olive oil and season with salt. Grill over high heat until nicely charred and just tender, about 2 minutes per side. Cut each zucchini slice in half crosswise.

Grill the sandwich thins, cut side down, over low heat, until just soft, about 30 seconds. Turn and grill until the bread starts to brown, about 1 minute. Spread the cut sides of the bread with the pesto. Layer 1 slice of cheese, portobello mushroom, zucchini, and 1 more slice of cheese on the bottom halves of each muffin. Close the sandwiches and grill over low heat, turning, until they’re crisp on the outside and the cheese is melted, about 4 minutes total. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve right away.

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