Because I like summer, and the sun, and because it's good to detox every once in a while with a light starter, it's time to behave. When it comes to vegetarianism, I'm all ears. I'm interested in every aspect of the "no missing the meat subject". Portobello mushrooms are one of those "gusys" which you rely on to carry one with your vegetarianism. In my case, I just couldn't believe my eyes when I moved to London from Spain and saw them for the first time in my life. The size was not only a joke, it was a reality! and when I taste them, well, mushrooms but huge, and you can really substitute meat with them, honest! form that moment on, they have become part of my life, and my fridge too. You can literally use them in a steak sandwich, they are the steak. I am not a vegetarian, but I live with one, and sometimes is pretty hard to adapt a menu for him, but Portobello mushrooms really help.
So, let's get ready for summer and let's take advantage of this colorful starter, that will impress your guests, if you have them, otherwise you can enjoy a lovely meal in the comfort of your home. This is a very light starter, full of flavour and colour. You can use ready cooked beetroot, but I strongly recommend to use fresh ones, at least if you try this for the fist time (use some gloves when you peel them if you don´t want to end up with red hands) The difference is huge. The dressing is a fresh and aromatic one, and you can also use it in any salad.
5 medium beetroot
4 large tomatoes
2 medium aubergines
1 tablespoon salt
6 portobello mushrooms
60 ml olive oil
2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
300g feta cheese diced
1/2 cup basil leaves
Preheat oven to hot.
Wrap beetroot individually in foil, place in baking dish and bake in hot oven for 50 minutes or until is cooked, cool 5 minutes and peel while still warm, cut into 1 cm slices.
Place tomato halves in an oven tray, drizzle with olive oil and bake in hot oven for about 40 minutes or until browned.
Cut aubergine into 1 cm slices, place in colander, sprinkle with salt and stand for 30 minutes. rinse with water and drain on kitchen paper.
Cook aubergine and mushrooms in batches on a hot grill or barbecue until brown on both sides.
Blend tomato with the oil, vinegar and salt until pureed. Push the tomato vinaigrette through a sieve, discard pulp.