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Playing Rachael's Portabella Parm Burgers

For an all-mushroom burger, make 8 portabella caps and stack several crispy mushrooms on each bun.


  • 4 large portabella mushroom caps, gills scraped and halved horizontally
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of ½ small lemon
  • 1 cup flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup panko
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • Olive oil, for shallow frying mushrooms and a drizzle for beef patties
  • 1½ pounds ground beef (80/20)
  • Sliced provolone cheese, 1 or 2 slices per burger (or layer with crispy mushrooms if making vegetarian sandwiches)
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar or balsamic drizzle
  • 3 tablespoons Fabanaise or mayonnaise
  • Romaine or iceberg lettuce, chopped
  • 4 soft sesame seed burger buns
  • White onion, chopped and rinsed
  • Giardiniera, drained and pulse-chopped in food processor


Serves: 4


Dress the portabellas with salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and let stand a few minutes. Coat mushrooms in flour, then egg, and then panko mixed with parm, herbs, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Heat about 1/8 inch oil in large skillet over medium to medium-high heat and brown the mushrooms 2-3 minutes on each side, and drain on wire rack. Keep warm in 275˚F oven.

Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high to high heat. Form 4 loose patties of beef. Add a drizzle of oil to the skillet, add meat, season with salt and pepper, and press with a spatula; brown and flip patties, 5-6 minutes. Top with cheese to melt.

Combine ketchup, balsamic and mayo for the sauce.

Build burgers: bun bottom, lettuce, onions, Giardiniera relish, burger patty, 2 crispy portabellas, sauce and bun top.