â€śI donâ€™t know what it is, but I can eat caramelized onions and portobellos all day long,â€ť says Alison Boteler, author of â€śThe Gourmetâ€™s Guide to Cooking with Beer,â€ť so she frequently turns to this hearty vegetarian snack. â€śUsing a really rich porter brings out the flavor and the natural sugars of the onion, and the caramelization is what really makes this dish.â€ť
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 6 cups Vidalia onions, sliced thin
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme (optional)
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 4 to 5 tablespoons porter (try Deschutes Black Butte Porter)
- 1⁄2 cup pine nuts
- 8 portobello mushroom caps
- garlic oil-flavored nonstick cooking spray
• Toast the pine nuts until golden brown in a nonstick skillet with a thin coating of olive oil.
• Melt the butter with the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, thyme, salt and sugar; stir until onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and continue cooking, stirring onions until golden brown; when the liquid begins to evaporate and the onions start to brown, deglaze pan with beer. (Caramelizing the onions takes about 20 minutes; deglaze the pan two to three times, adding as much beer as necessary.) Stir in the toasted pine nuts.
• Preheat an oven to 425 degrees, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick spray. Place the mushroom caps on foil with the top of the caps facing up, and cover with another coat of nonstick spray. Bake 5 to 8 minutes, until the mushrooms begin to shrink.
• Remove the mushrooms from the oven and turn them stem-side up. Fill the caps with the onion mixture. Return to oven and bake for another 5 to 8 minutes.