BBQ Portobello Mushroom Sliders with Caramelized Smoked Onions, Grilled Everything Zucchini, Charred Asparagus

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On our way back from DC, we stopped by Trader Joe’s for canned cat food. Of course I also did a bit of impulse shopping and came home with wicked cute slider buns and TJ’s new Everything Seasoning, which I love. I spent most of the drive back, while Amy sat shotgun working on her final emails before her vacation, thinking about what kind of sliders I wanted to make. It had been so unseasonably warm our week at Virginia Beach/DC that we both had an insatiable craving for something grilled. By the time we got back home, unloaded the car, loved on the kitties for a bit we were back on the road again. We stopped first at Herman’s Quality Meats and loaded up on their excellent sausages and free range chicken. I still hadn’t decided what to do with those slider buns, but while we were in Newark Natural Foods I stumbled upon perfectly sized portobello mushrooms and my self induced slider crisis was over. Once we got back home, I cranked up Pandora’s Kacey Musgraves station, opened the slider to the deck, fired up the charcoal, and cracked opened an ice cold beer. For a few sweet moments it felt like summer and by the time I finished grilling, it tasted like summer too.

BBQ Portobello Mushroom Sliders with Caramelized Smoked Onions 

Ingredients:

8 sm to med sized whole Portobello Mushrooms, washed and stems trimmed but not removed

8 Slider buns

1 Sweet Onion, cut into thick slices

2 tbsp Stubb’s Spicy BBQ sauce, or bbq sauce of choice

8 sm, thin slices of Smoked Gouda Cheese or cheese of choice, optional

Garnish: Broccoli Sprouts, Dill Pickle

Method:

The night before or at least 2 hours prior to grilling, add Pecan wood chunks to water and allow them to soak. Prepare a charcoal grill. Once the coals are white hot, add the soaked Pecan wood chunks to the coolest section of your grill. You want them on just enough coals to keep the chunks smoking but not catch on fire. The longer you soak the wood chunks the easier this will be. Sear the sliced onion over the hottest section of coals on both sides and then move onion slices directly over the wood chunks, cover, and smoke until the onions are tender about 30 minutes turning as needed. Finish the onions inside. Chop the smoked onion then continue to cook over a low flame in a small cast iron skillet with a tab of butter and a pinch of salt. Saute until caramelized, about 15 minutes then set aside. Next grill the mushrooms. Toss the mushrooms in the bbq sauce then add the mushrooms to the grill, cover and cook until they are tender and slightly charred. Remove mushrooms and quickly grill each of the buns until just toasted through. Assemble the sliders. Add a thin layer of mayo to the bottom bun, then top with the dill pickle, caramelized onions, bbq portobello mushroom, slice of Smoked Gouda cheese if using, and chopped Broccoli sprouts. We enjoyed the leftover sliders for lunch the rest of the week so don’t be afraid of grilling extra portions.

Grilled Everything Zucchini

Ingredients:

2 Zucchini, trimmed and quartered

about 1 tbsp EVOO

about 1 tbsp TJ’s Everything Seasoning

Salt and Black Pepper to taste

Method:

Prepare a charcoal grill. Once coals are white hot, char the zucchini over the hottest section of coals flesh side down. Move to the cooler section of coals skin side down, cover and continue cooking until tender. Serve immediately.

Charred Asparagus

Ingredients:

1 bunch of Asparagus, trimmed

juice from 1 lemon

about 1 tbsp EVOO

1 pinch of Red Pepper flakes

Salt and Black Pepper to taste

Method:

In large casserole dish, toss the asparagus in the EVOO, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Prepare a charcoal grill. Once the coals are white hot, grill the asparagus until charred, moving and turning as needed. Finish asparagus with additional lemon juice just before serving if desired.

 

 

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