Yes that’s right folks – this recipe is vegetarian! I’ve been getting a few requests to come up with a vegetarian burger recipe, and I’ve done so at last. Strictly speaking, it’s not a burger. But you can eat it like one, and it’s bloody nice.
- One pack of 3-4 large flat mushrooms. I used field mushrooms; portabella ones would work well too.
- A quarter of a pack of soft unsalted butter (you can use salted butter; just leave the salt out later)
- Half a large red chilli, chopped finely
- 3 large cloves of garlic, crushed
- Half a small red onion, chopped finely
- A teaspoon each of fresh thyme and oregano
- Salt and pepper, to taste
First off, a couple of important things. Don’t wash the mushrooms! If they’re dirty, brush them dry using a pastry brush, or such. Washing them makes them absorb water, which is a recipe for stewed mushrooms (not good).
Second, make sure your butter is soft. Leave it out of the fridge for a couple of hours. It’ll need to chill again for about an hour after you’re done.
Right! On with the recipe. Combine all of the ingredients above, except for the mushrooms. That should give you a fairly flavour-packed butter. Now to re-chill it so that it’s easier to use later. Grab yourself some cling film, and dollop all of your butter in the middle. Roll the cling film around the butter, twisting in at the end, so that you can get a rough, thick sausage shape (see mine to the right – it looks rubbish, but you get the idea). Put this in the fridge for an hour or so. When fairly hardened, take off the cling film and slice the butter sausage into between six and eight rounds.
When you’re ready to cook, start by placing the mushrooms on the grill, bottom-side-down, for about five minutes (less if you’re not using a crappy portable barbecue, as I was):
Turn the mushrooms. Put two of those butter slices on each mushroom, and cook for a further 3-4 minutes. The butter will melt into the mushroom gills, which absorb the flavour wonderfully.
You’re pretty much done! Treat the mushroom like a burger and serve it with cheese on a bun. Even for a non-veggie like me, these are fantastic!