I am a vegetarian but my friends are not. Going out to eat makes things easy, but there are times you just want to cook for people. This Mushroom and Cheese Patty Melt offers plenty of variation so I can cook at home and satisfy everyone.
4 portions of protein – hamburger, boneless chicken breast, veggie burger, fish filets, thin sliced pastrami.
1 T neutral flavored oil of your choice – light olive, safflower, corn, or peanut are all good choices.
1 T butter
1/2 pound brown, crimini or shitake mushrooms, cleaned, diced and with woody bits removed.
1 yellow onion diced
salt to taste
pepper to taste
2 tsp flour
1/4 c stout beer or dry red wine
4 slices reduced fat provolone, or ementhaler, gruyere or apenzeller swiss cheese.
8 slices bread (rye, brown or sourdough) – sprayed lightly with cooking spray, or brushed lightly with olive oil, or buttred lightly on one side.
1. Heat oil and butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Toss in onion and mushroom. Saute 3 minutes.
2. Sprinkle in salt, pepper and flour over mushroom mixture and cook another 1 minute, stirring constantly.
3. Stir in beer or wine and heat until it begins to thicken. Remove from heat.
4. Prepare protein according to your preference.
5. In a non-stick skillet or on a griddle, place 4 slices of bread coated side down.. Top each with a protein, one fourth of the mushroom mixture, and a slice of cheese. Cook for two minutes. until browned. Top with second piece of bread, and flip to brown on that side.
I prefer the texture of diced mushrooms, but this is also good with the mushrooms and onions thinly sliced.
I also like these with a little dijon mustard. I have friends who wouldn’t think of serving a burger without slathering mayo on the bread.
If I make this with beer, I serve beer with dinner. If I make this with wine, I serve it with wine. I still usually drink ice water or club soda.
I like to serve these patty-melts with herbed roast potatoes and green beans cooked with a little nutmeg. It’s an easy meal that allows everyone – vegetarian and omnivore to share a meal.
To reduce calories, serve open-faced and use reduced calorie cheese.
I will use this same basic mushroom mixture on top of toasted bagel and cream cheese. When everyone else is eating lox, I don’t have to feel left out.