This week, this “Grill-More” Girl is serving up some simple grilled vegetables!
Backyard grilling doesn’t always have to mean meat. Vegetables are one of the easiest things to make on the grill. Grilling helps to intensify the natural sweetness and flavor of most veggies. Also, during the summer there are so many veggies that are “in season” either at your supermarket or local farmer’s market that you can prepare an entire meal grilling several different veggies for a main course or stick to just one type for a great side dish.
One of the keys to grilling vegetables successfully is to make sure they are cut into pieces that will cook both quickly and evenly.
For vegetables such as eggplant, squash, onions or zucchini, I like to use a mandolin to slice, which takes all the guesswork out of making the slices all the same thickness. I find that cutting my veggie slices into ½ inch thick pieces works best, just thick enough not to burn, dissolve or fall into the flames.
When preparing smaller veggies, such as mushrooms, garlic or even Brussels sprouts, use a perforated stainless-steel pan, which you can place directly on top of your grill. You get direct exposure to your grill flames and all the while keeping your small veggies safely on top of the grill and not fall through the grates and burn to a crisp.
I like to season them simply with salt and pepper and then marinate them on both sides with some olive oil and a bit of balsamic vinegar (I think it helps with caramelizing of the veggies), but you could use any sort of vinaigrette or flavoring you wanted.
Before placing them on your medium-high preheated grill, make sure to lightly oil the grates to make sure that the veggies won’t stick to the grill. Turn the veggies often and make sure to have a little extra of your marinade at the ready and brush it on your veggies to prevent drying. Depending upon the type of vegetable your grilling, the cook time can vary greatly, anywhere from 5 minutes (for something like squash) to 20 minutes (for corn on the cob).
Remove them from the heat as soon as they are done so as not to dry out. Arrange them nicely on a big platter and you can serve grilled veggies either hot or cold. Use the leftovers to make a flavorful sandwich or chop up and toss into a salad.
Always remember, with just a little bit of planning and preparation there’s always time for a home cooked meal! Make sure that you check out my “Grill-More Girl” Cristina over at centraljerseyworkingmoms.com today too. She’s serving up a little surf & turf that I told her she could make for me anytime!
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