Spanish-Style Portobello Mushrooms and Peppers

Modified from Whole Foods Recipes, via iphone app

Wow, we were blown away by how wonderful these peppers and portobello mushrooms were!  Roasted mushrooms and peppers are one of our favorite side dishes, but the vinaigrette from this recipe with capers, garlic, and raisins added a sweet and sour dimension that turned this dish from simply good to fantastic!

If I haven’t previously mentioned how helpful the Whole Foods FREE APP for iphone and ipad is, please forgive me.  My favorite feature is the “on hand” search.  You enter one or more ingredients that you have “on hand”, and it will search and bring up recipes.  This is great when you want to try something different with portobello mushrooms, for example.  This feature also comes in handy while you are shopping and find something that you just have to have – but you aren’t sure what you are going to do with it.  Maybe you discovered the most beautiful bunch of plantains you have ever seen.  Right there in the store you can find a recipe and pick up any other ingredients you might need!

This recipe originally called for grilling the mushrooms and peppers, but instead, I roasted the vegetables in the oven. I had less mushroom caps than called for, so I had to cut the recipe down (which was unfortunate).  The overview of the recipe by Whole Foods warned that you might want to double the recipe since leftovers would be equally delicious – I heartily agree with that statement!  Since we had no leftovers, I can only imagine how wonderful the vegetables would be after more time to soak in the piquant flavors of the vinaigrette.  I’m pretty sure this vinaigrette would also be tasty with roasted eggplant and oven-dried tomatoes…an idea for another day!

Make this as a vegetarian entree or a side dish.  It can be served warm or at room temperature.


  • 4 large portobello mushroom caps
  • 1 large or 2 medium-sized red bell peppers
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher or sea salt; freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • 2 ounces Manchego cheese, shaved (I substituted Parmesan Reggiano)

Preheat grill or oven to 400F.  Remove stems from mushrooms and brush off any dirt.  Cut peppers into quarters (lengthwise) and remove seeds and membranes.  Brush vegetables with extra-virgin olive oil and season lightly with salt and pepper.  Grill or roast until tender (8-12 minutes), turning once.  Set aside and allow to cool enough to handle.

In the meantime, combine raisins and vinegar in a small bowl and allow to sit for 10 minutes.  (I abbreviated this step by zapping the bowl of raisins and vinegar in the microwave for 10 seconds and letting it sit for a couple of minutes.)  Stir garlic into the raisin-vinegar mixture.  Whisk in 1-2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil.  Stir in capers.  Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

To serve, slice the mushrooms and peppers into strips and arrange on platter.  Spoon vinaigrette over the vegetables, and top with shaved cheese.

Today’s soundtrack is a local act, the Swimming Pool Q’s. Formed in the waning days of punk, the Q’s have managed, in one shape or another to stick around for nearly 30 years. Witty lyrics atop whirling Beefhart-style funk, they first got their shot with The Deep End. Once you hear “Big Fat Tractor” or “Ratbait” your life will never be the same!

2008 saw the latest release from the group, the sublime Royal Academy of Reality. Tempered a bit- but only a bit- by middle age, Jeff Calder and crew still have a sound unlike any other. This is the bands masterpiece, and if they never release a note again, it’s ok. Come on in, the water’s fine!


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