|Photo by Mary E.|
To follow up with our How To Grill A Fab Steak, I figured that the next best thing to do is grill some veggies. I personally love grilled vegetables (and grilled fruit!) , and I really love how the smoke and the char can be used as a flavor enhancer, as the smoke adds great flavor to anything that is cooked on it, in my opinion. Grilled vegetables are a must have summer side dish and a good way to utilize the fresh produce that your local farmers market has to offer. All it takes is a hot grill, veggies, and a few common kitchen ingredients and you will have flavorful grilled mushrooms for burgers, or charred onions to accompany your juicy grilled steak.
Plain and Simple:
Grilled vegetables only need a few ingredients and a small amount of time to become a delicious summer side dishes. Your community farmers market will help a great deal in this when adding variety to your vegetables, and the fresher the vegetable the better it will taste. For maximum flavor, all you really need is oil, salt and pepper. Toss your vegetables evenly with a small amount of oil before laying them on the hot grill. Oil helps the seasoning stick to the vegetables, and also not to stick to the grill which can cause tearing or separation.
Don't Sweat the Technique:
Everyone wants those deeply charred grill marks, even on vegetables. For fab grill marks, do not flip vegetables over immediately when placing on the grill. Allow them to stay on one side for the first few minutes before flipping. Cutting your veggies to a good size prior to grilling will also help get even grill marks. Cut desired vegetables between 1/4th and 1/2 inches thick, and when slicing round vegetables like onions, slice them across for flat cooking. Using skewers also helps keep veggies in one place for even cooking. If using wooden skewers, soak in water to prevent burning on the grill and skewer veggies like small tomatoes, asparagus, and potatoes to help them stay in one place and not roll all over the grill.
Eat Fab :
Here's just a few veggies that are common on the grill. I LOVE slicing and blanching fennel and grilling as well!
Asparagus - Wash and trim off course ends. Skewer to prevent asparagus from falling through grates. Season with oil, salt, and pepper.
Mushrooms- Thick and meaty mushrooms are FAB for grilling, due to the fact that they can stand up to the heat and the char. (i.e. portabella mushrooms) Season with salt, pepper, and oil.
Corn - Remove the husk and the silk. Brush with oil and season with salt and pepper
Tomatoes - Cut tomatoes in half. Brush the flat side of the tomato with oil, season with salt and pepper and grill flat side down.
Potatoes - Blanch potatoes in salted water, and when slightly cooked, strain and cool. When ready to grill, season with oil, salt and pepper. Use skewers to prevent small potatoes from rolling around on the grill.
Peppers - Peppers can be seeded and cut into quarters or grilled whole. Season with oil, salt and pepper.
Summer Squash - Slice squash lengthwise, about a quarter inch thick. Season with oil, salt, and pepper.