Meat Lite: Portobello and Herbed Ricotta Sandwiches

[Photograph: Joy Manning]

This easy sandwich gets so much meaty flavor and texture from a layer of seared portabellos, it hardly needs the prosciutto. Feel free to omit it. This makes the sandwich a terrific option for meals when vegetarians and non-veggies dine together, because the pork product is entirely optional. The flavorful herbed ricotta mixture is what makes it fancy enough for company. Serve it with roasted vegetables or a bowl of vegetable soup to make it a complete meal.

About the author: Joy Manning is the restaurant critic at Philadelphia Magazine. She blogs at Oyster Evangelist.

Meat Lite: Portobello and Herbed Ricotta Sandwiches

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About This Recipe

Yield:serves 4

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon grated shallot
  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 large portabello mushrooms, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 slices multi-grain bread, toasted
  • 2 ounces (8 very thin slices) best quality prosciutto

Procedures

  1. 1

    In a small bowl, whisk together the ricotta, shallot, parsley, lemon zest, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and the red pepper flakes until well combined. Set aside.

  2. 2

    Preheat a large, cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for at least three minutes. Using a brush, lightly film the mushrooms with oil on both sides and season with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Arrange a single layer of mushroom slices in the heated pan, leaving plenty of room between slices. Cook, undisturbed, for 5 minutes on the first side, then flip, and cook for an additional 3 minutes on the other side. Do this in two batches if necessary.

  3. 3

    When all the mushrooms have been cooked, spread 1/4 of the ricotta mixture on 4 slices of the toast. Top with 1/4 of the mushroom slices, 2 slices of prosciutto, and the remaining 4 slices of toast. Serve immediately.

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