Is it still grilling weather in your region? You can say so if it is. I won’t be jealous nor will I wish torrential rains upon you. Promise.
During this past summer something was decidedly off with my cooking: I managed to ruin entire meals on the grill, on the stove, and in the toaster oven. Husbando was rooting for me to break the record and char something in the microwave already. Har har.
With this dish I finally got it right, though. A grilled shiitake mushroom so juicy and flavorful that, in the hubs’ words “it’s really good. It’s, like, steakhouse good.” Now if only I could get the kid to overcome her aversion of edible fungi.
And why shiitake, you ask? Because they are a fabulous! Regarded as medicinal by the Chinese for thousands of years, these humble looking ‘shrooms pack an amazing amount of iron, B-vitamins, and minerals. They also support cardiovascular health and they help our immune system. Add to this that an estimated 100 compounds in the shiitake mushroom work together as anti-tumors, and we have a winner.
I chose to serve my mushroom accompanied by the veggies I would add to a burger (lettuce, tomato, red onion) but I skipped the buns, and grilled asparagus and fresh baby carrots completed the meal. Shiitakes are fleshy in a very meat-like way, which makes them excellent stand ins for burger patties or steaks.
Grilled Marinated Shiitake
4 Shiitake mushrooms, de-stemmed and clean
Any veggies you want for accompanying your mushroom: lettuce, tomato, onion, zucchini, peppers, etc.
Sea salt to taste
For the mushroom marinade:
1/4 C of Extra virgin olive oil
1/4 C of freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp dry rosemary
salt and pepper to taste
Mix up your marinade and place the clean mushrooms in it. Leave them there for 30 minutes to an hour, making sure you flip the mushrooms once so they soak equally on both sides.
In the meanwhile, prepare your asparagus by cutting off the lower ends and shaving off the tougher stems. Place them in tin foil and drizzle lightly with a bit of soy sauce and sprinkle with sea salt. Wrap up the tin foil.
You may want to put the asparagus on the grill a few minutes before you add the mushrooms, since we want to make sure everything cooks at the same time. The mushrooms will need no wrapping, just place them directly on the grill. The ‘shrooms will cook very quickly, needing at most maybe 3 minutes on each side; you don’t want to overcook them and thus cancel out the nutrients!
Since it goes so fast, be vigilant. Be very, very vigilant. Unless you want to end up like me, cussing like a sailor because you managed to burn dinner again.