Grilled Mushroom “Burgers” on Polenta “Buns”


  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 large shallot
  • 1/3 cup smoked almonds (a generous handful)
  • 1/3 cup chopped flat leaf parsley (a generous handful)
  • 1/3 cup oil-cured sundried tomatoes (a generous handful)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus more for brushing
  • 8 small portobello mushroom caps, wiped clean
  • One tube prepared plain or sundried tomato polenta (18 ounces), cut into 16 equal slices
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 slices smoked mozzarella or scamorza cheese
  • 4 ribs celery with leafy tops, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches (about 8 ounces) arugula or spinach, chopped (about 4 cups)


Pre-heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high.

Using a food processor, puree 1/4 cup water, the shallot, almonds, parsley, sundried tomatoes, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and mustard. With the machine on, pour in 1/2 cup EVOO to form a smooth, thick dressing. Pour about two-thirds of the dressing into a large bowl. Add the mushroom caps and turn to coat.

Place the mushrooms on the grill, cover the grill (or cover the grill pan with foil) and cook, turning once, 7 minutes total. Brush the polenta slices with EVOO and season with salt and pepper. Grill until just heated through, about 4 minutes. Place the “burgers” on the polenta rounds, top with a slice of cheese and another polenta round and cook until the cheese melts, 1 minute more.

Toss the celery and arugula with the remaining dressing. Serve 2 “burgers” with the salad alongside.

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