Saturday, February 16, 2008

Valentine's Day Dinner

I decided I wanted to put a little extra effort into Thursday night's dinner, since it was Valentine's Day. But at the same time I needed something not too difficult for a weeknight. In the same issue of Everyday Food and in fact just one page before the warm spinach salad below, I found my inspiration. The EF recipe for Open-Faced Cheeseburgers with Mushrooms and Onion was the starting point for my less-fancy sounding Mushroom Swiss Burger Stacks. The recipe called for fontina cheese and tomatoes, serving the mushroom and onion on the side, and resting your burger on a slice of sourdough. I canceled the tomato, substituted swiss cheese, and eliminated the bun altogether- instead choosing to place our burgers directly on the mushrooms and onion. Josh loves mushroom swiss burgers, and I'd never made them in any form before so I knew this would be a good Love Day treat.

Mushroom Swiss Burger Stacks
Adapted from Everyday Food; Serves 2

1-2 tablespoons olive oil
5 oz. white mushrooms, sliced
coarse salt and ground pepper
1/2 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon red-wine vinegar
1 pound ground beef chuck
Worcestershire sauce
2 slices swiss cheese

  • In a large skillet, heat 1/2-1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms release their liquid and start to brown, 5 to 7 minutes; transfer to a bowl.
  • Add onion and remaining 1/2-1 tablespoon olive oil to skillet; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion starts to brown, 5 to 7 minutes (if bottom of skillet becomes too dry, add a little water and scrape up browned bits). Return mushrooms to skillet; stir in vinegar, and set aside.
  • Season your beef with salt and pepper and several dashes of Worcestershire sauce. Very gently mix and form meat into patties. Season again with salt and pepper. Cook to your personal preference. Add swiss cheese slices several minutes before burgers are done to allow cheese to melt over top. Serve burgers on top of mushrooms and onion.
My notes: The original recipe called for broiling the burgers. I cooked mine in my grill pan on the stove. This was easier for me since Josh gets home much later and I eat before him. Does your husband like to grill? Put him in charge of the burgers while you make the mushrooms and onion. However you'd like to prepare the burgers is up to you, but I highly recommend you prepare it all soon!

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