The Old Forge Farmers’ Market opened for the season last Friday, and we all know what yummy fruits and veggies we can find there.
But, show of hands, who is tired of preparing them the same ol’, same ol’ way?
I know I do.
So how about some ideas on preparing and grilling those farm fresh veggies?
First of all, keep in mind that extra crunchy vegetables such as broccoli and carrots should be blanched prior to grilling.
Blanching is a cooking technique in which food is briefly immersed in boiling water or fat in order to enhance their natural color.
Blanched vegetables are typically plunged into an ice water bath afterward to halt the cooking process.
After about a minute, drain them and blot dry with a paper towel.
Broccoli. Personally, I don’t care much for the big stems, but they work great for grilling purposes.
Cut the stems approximately two inches from the crown, then stand the spears on end and cut them vertically into half-inch slices.
Brush slices lightly with olive oil and grill for one to two minutes on each side.
Try a marinade of olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and then shake some Parmesan over it when cooked.
Carrots. I would use big Bugs Bunny carrots vs. baby carrots.
Cut tops and bottoms off of the carrot, then cut lengthwise into quarter-inch slices.
Brush lightly with, you guessed it, olive oil.
Grill the slices for three minutes, turn and grill for two more.
Try a glaze of butter, balsamic vinegar and rosemary!
Onions. Try red, yellow or sweet. Cut crosswise into half-inch slices and insert two toothpicks crosswise to hold slices together.
Brush lightly with olive oil and grill for two minutes on each side.
Portobello Mushrooms. Use mushrooms that are around three-inches across.
Discard the stems and pare away the ragged edges.
Brush lightly with olive oil.
Grill each side for approximately two minutes, until no longer raw-looking at its thickest point.
A yummy marinade is olive oil, onion, garlic and balsamic vinegar.
Zucchini. Cut the top and bottom off of a fat, medium to large squash. Then cut lengthwise into half-inch slices.
Brush lightly with olive oil and grill for two to three minutes on each side.
Sprinkle with a little garlic powder, salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning for a splash of flavor.
These are just a few examples of the amazing, healthy veggies that can be paired up with burgers, chicken, steaks, etc. or combined for some great kebabs!
I cannot wait to taste the freshness of summer—the possibilities are endless!