Barbecue season is in full swing!
Barbecue season is in full swing! Barbecue fanatics will tell you that you can grill anything on the barbecue, but let’s stick with vegetables for the moment. We’re lucky to be able to choose from a wide variety of Quebec vegetables, so let’s take advantage and enjoy them grilled thanks to our favourite summer cooking appliance.
Let's begin with the veggies we're used to grilling.
Potatoes: These are fabulous prepared in a foil packet with fresh herbs, onions, and a drizzle of olive oil. They just need about 30 minutes on the barbecue, and they’re ready to serve! Baked potatoes are also delightful. Start by piercing and brushing them with olive oil and then placing them on the grill, turning from time to time. After an hour, serve topped with sour cream, fresh chives, pepper, and fleur de sel.
Zucchini: Slice lengthwise into strips, being sure not to remove the vitamin-rich skin. Simply brush with a little olive oil and grill for a few minutes on the barbecue. Serve garnished with a sprig of fresh rosemary, some pink pepper, and salt.
Onions: These excellent flavour enhancers are often added to vegetables or fish being cooked in foil packets, and to meat brochettes. Make use of all available varieties—yellow, red, white, and even pearl onions, which are simply succulent when peeled and cooked until golden brown.
Sweet peppers: Place whole peppers on the barbecue grill and cook for about 10 minutes with the lid down, and turn them often. After grilling, their skin will be blackened and swollen. You can store them like this or remove the blackened skin once they've cooled off in a resealable plastic bag. Remove the core and use the pepper any way you like.
Eggplant: A great addition to your summertime sandwich of grilled veggies. Cut the eggplant lengthwise into 1-cm (½-in.) slices. Coat with a thin layer of olive oil and your favourite fresh herbs, and then grill about 5 minutes per side.
Now let’s stray from the beaten path for a minute and explore some new options!
Broccoli and cauliflower: Blanch broccoli and cauliflower florets for one or two minutes and then place them on the barbecue. Serve grilled, or mix them with a dressing of creamy Greek yogurt and fresh herbs for a cold side salad. You can also simply add them to your foil vegetable packets.
Carrots: Opt for smaller carrots. Cut them in half lengthwise, place directly on the grill, and cook until tender. Drizzle with sesame oil, add a bit of orange zest, and sprinkle on some sesame seeds. A must try!
Corn: Two cooking options. First option: start by boiling your corn cobs and then finish cooking them on the barbecue. Brush the cobs with flavoured butter and grill for about 5 minutes, turning several times. Second option: Leave some of the husk on and soak the cobs in cold water for about 20 minutes so they won’t burn. Grill them on the barbecue for 15 to 20 minutes, turning often.
Lettuce: Want to spice up your Caesar salad? Grill the lettuce! Choose romaine lettuce and cut it in half lengthwise. Brush with oil, place it cut-side down on the grill, and cook for a minute or two. Your lettuce will grill intensely and the flavour will increase!