3.16.2008

15 Minutes

The funny thing is I've been a subscriber to Bon Appetit Magazine since I was 15 years old, let's see that's _____years ago! Too many to count. The March issue with the beautiful corned beef sandwiches held an emotional moment for me. In the R S V P section there it was.... Zinnia Cafe in very large, bold letters and the cutest line drawing/ cartoon of a Portobello Mushroom sandwich. Apparently someone in West Virginia thought enough of my food to write a letter to Bon Appetit looking for this sandwich recipe of the now closed Zinnia Cafe.
To tell you the truth, I had forgotten I had submitted the recipe. I think it was late 2004 when I received an official looking letter from Bon Appetit requesting this recipe at the beckoning of several requests they received. I was beside myself with excitement then. I submitted and waited, and waited, scouring every issue for nearly a year. Then, when I closed up shop in 2005, I had moved on, life had taken me many different directions, until.....
Thank you Mr. West Virginia! As I imagine you taking the time out of your busy life, (it must be busy if you travel to Medford, OR for business) to pen a request for a sandwich you enjoyed so much you could not forget about it. Thank you for resurrecting my dream one last time.
OK... it's been 26 years of subscriptions and one moment I'll be forever grateful for.


Portobello Mushroom Sandwich with Roasted Garlic and Basil Mayonnaise
Makes 6
2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
Olive oil - for drizzling
1 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup minced fresh Basil leaves
1 tsp plus 3 tblsp Balsamic vinegar
6 tblsp butter- divided
1 lb Portobello mushrooms (about 5 large) stems trimmed, cut into 3/4" thick slices
1 -1lb loaf of pain rustique, ciabatta, or focaccia, halved horizontally
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 lg tomato -thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place garlic in a small ovenproof dish. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Cover tightly and with foil and roast until tender, about 30 minutes. Cool; peel and mash garlic.
Mix mayonnaise, basil, 1 tsp balsamic vinegar and mashed roasted garlic in a small bowl.
(Can be made ahead- cover and chill)
Melt 4 tblsp of the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add mushrooms and toss to coat. Drizzle remaining 3 tblsp balsamic vinegar over and cook until tender, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Season with salt & pepper.
(Can be made 2 hours ahead, let stand at room temp-reheat before using)
Preheat broiler. Spread remaining 2 tblsp butter over cut sides of bread. Broil bread, buttered side up, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Watch closely to prevent burning. Spread desired amount of basil mayonnaise over toasted sides of bread. Arrange mushrooms in an even layer over bottom half of bread. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Arrange tomato slices in a single layer over the cheese. Cover with top of bread, cut into 6 sandwiches and serve immediately....................BON APPETIT!

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A dedicated foodie, with a passion for the best food. Favorite food crushes include; Cheese, Wine, Breads, Seafood, anything made with eggs, ...there's actually no point in a list, there isn't much out there I don't have a crush on. Transplanted from the Northeast at age 18, a whole new frontier of food was opened up to me. I have fished for Salmon, hunted for mushrooms, cracked open fresh oysters from the sea and devoured them on the spot. Figs, pears, peaches, so many indigenous jewels! I dedicate this BLOG to the endless variety this region provides. My hope is to live here for a very long time & continue to discover and experience it's unique bounty! Alas, my life has now taken me to Cincinnati, OH where the food culture is like none I have ever experienced.

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