Grilled Vegetable Salad for Thanksgiving

grilled-vegetables

If your oven space is at a premium while preparing your thanksgiving feast, why not employ your BBQ? This recipe for grilled veggie salad can be made quickly and bonus … you can prepare it in advance.  In fact the whole thing tastes better when it has had the opportunity to marinate in the fridge for half a day. So, throw the veggies on the BBQ right after you get the turkey in the oven or even before!

I am providing a list of ingredients for the salad I made but really; just use what you have on hand. The amounts you use will depend on how many people are joining you for the giving of thanks.

The recipe that follows will make a nice side-dish for six.

Ingredients

ingredients for the salad …

  • 1 ear of corn, shucked
  • 1 medium sized zucchini, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 purple onion, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  • 3 plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 red pepper, seeded & cut into thirds
  • 1 yellow pepper, seeded & cut into thirds
  • 12 spears of asparagus, woody part of stems removed
  • 1 head of romaine lettuce, cut in half, washed and patted dry
  • 1/3 C olive oil

ingredients for the vinaigrette …

  • 1 T Dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pushed through a press
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, minced
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • ½ C oil

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Preparation

  1. Pre-heat your BBQ to medium-high for about 15 minutes with the lid down while you prep your vegetables.
  2. Place all the veggies, except the romaine lettuce in a large bowl and drizzle the olive oil (hold 1 T of the oil in reserve) over-top. Gently toss the vegetables so they all get evenly coated with the oil.
  3. Lift the lid of the BBQ and spread the veggies around on the lower grill rack. Using long-handled tongs, flip them over and move them around so all sides of each vegetable gets cooked evenly. Some vegetables will grill faster than others so keep a close eye on them all, removing each from the heat when done.
  4. Brush the romaine halves with the reserved oil and place, flat side down on the lower rack of the BBQ. Grill for a few minutes until nicely charred. Remove and set aside to cool with the other vegetables.
  5. When cool enough to handle slice the grilled corn kernels from the cob and place them in a bowl large enough to handle all of the salad ingredients. Cut the remaining veggies into chunks, except the romaine, and transfer to the same bowl.
  6. To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the Dijon mustard, minced garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Trickle the oil into these ingredients in a slow, steady stream while continuing to vigorously whisk it altogether. This action works to emulsify the oil into the rest of the ingredients, creating perfectly blended vinaigrette.
  7. Use half of the vinaigrette on this salad, reserving the rest for another day.
  8. Cover and refigerate until feasting time.
  9. Cut the charred romaine into chunks and toss into the salad right before serving.

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Yellow Beans & Pesto

Yellow Beans

My friend Pat was good enough to share the last of her wax bean crop this year. Lucky us! So, tonight I am preparing these beautiful beans with the basil from my herb pot and some garlic (Last week’s bounty from Pat’s garden).

Garlic Bulbs

Ingredients

  • ½ C packed basil leaves (reserve a few for garnish)
  • ¼ C pine nuts
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced or pushed through a press
  • ¼ C olive oil
  • ¼ C finely grated parmesan cheese
  • black pepper & salt to taste
  • 3 C wax beans, washed & trimmed

preparation

  1. Combine basil leaves, pine nuts and garlic in a food processor. Pulse a few times then pour in the olive oil and process until smooth. Add the grated parmesan and pulse a few more times until a paste forms. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper. You can use a blender to make the pesto as well but you will have to scrape the sides down more often.
  2. I usually leave the yellow beans whole, just trimming the stem end of each bean. Steam the prepped beans for about 5 minutes being careful not to overdue the cooking process. Toss the steamed beans with the pesto and serve immediately garnished with a few basil leaves.

 Serves 6 as a sidedish

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Garlic Mashed Potatoes

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Who can resist this most comforting of the comfort foods? Garlic mashed potatoes might take a bit more fussing than simply throwing a few spuds in the oven for an hour so, but the end result is well worth the effort.

Ingredients

  • 4 large potatoes
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1/3 cup heated milk
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Peel potatoes and cut into medium sized chunks.
  2. Place potatoes into medium sized saucepan and cover with lightly salted water over high heat.
  3. When water boils turn heat down to medium high and continue to boil until potatoes soften and are cooked through (about 15 minutes).
  4. While the potatoes are boiling melt the butter in a small skillet over medium high heat and add the minced garlic.
  5. Sauté the garlic in the butter until the garlic and the butter begin to brown slightly. Watch this mixture closely as the garlic and butter can go from slightly brown to burnt and bitter very quickly!
  6. Drain the potatoes, place them back in the pot and add butter/garlic mixture. Mash together until the potatoes, butter and garlic bits are well mixed.
  7. Add the heated milk and continue to mash and mix until everything is light and fluffy.
  8. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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* All photos used on Planet Janet Kitchen belong to the author and photographer, Janet Moore and may not be re-posted without permission.