8/2/16

Grilled mushroom with pesto and goat cheese



There's something about the taste of grilled food that makes my taste buds excited.
And this is coming from a vegetarian!

On Sunday evening, Karel and I decided to fire-up the outdoor grill for a delicious dinner to finish a great weekend of training. Although my training volume/intensity is low relative to Karel (who is training for Ironman Mont Tremblant in a few weeks), we were both in need of a good meal to nourish and fuel our bodies.

My garden is overflowing with basil so the first thing that came to mind was pesto. I just love pesto on a grilled mushroom (thanks Katie Malone for the idea!) and as I was feeling extra creative, I didn't follow a recipe but instead, I made up my own -  a handful of fresh basil, a small handful of Parmesan and Asiago shredded cheese, a few long drizzles of olive oil and a sliced clove of garlic all into a food processor. My pesto was extra garlicky and had a nice kick to it.
(I found this recipe for you in case you want to make your own pesto at home)

While Karel had his grass-fed beef burger cooking on the grill (he has a special spot on the grill for his meat so that my food doesn't touch his), I built our grilled mushrooms.

Grilled mushroom with pesto and goat cheese
-1 large portobello mushroom cap (stem removed)
-Pesto (to cover the mushroom)
-Goat cheese (crumbled on top)
-Sliced baby tomatoes (from my garden)
-Olive oil (just a drizzle to give it a little more flavor)
-Shredded Parmesan and Asiago cheese (a nice salty taste)
-Salt (just a pinch)

The mushrooms do not need a long time to cook (~4-8 minutes depending on the heat of the grill, position of the rack with the mushroom and the size of your mushroom) and to help the presentation, I keep the mushroom on tinfoil, instead of directly on the grill rack.

To go with our grilled mushroom (and Karel's meat patty), we grilled a few boiled potatoes that I had left over from dinner on Saturday, when I made homemade mashed potatoes.  I find that boiling potatoes ahead of time helps for quicker cooking on the grill.

To prep the gold potatoes, I sliced them in half, coated the bottoms with olive oil and sprinkled with salt. Karel grilled face down, directly on the grill.

And to change things up, instead of a salad, I kept it simple with a large handful of Leasa alfalfa sprouts.
Did you know that 1 cup sprouts has 3g of protein??

If you find yourself in a food rut, consider grilling food (whether outside or in your oven) as it can change up the taste and texture of your food, giving you a new exciting taste-bud happy experience every time you eat.