Grilled vegetables are quick to prepare, taste delicious and are the perfect accompaniment to barbecues that are otherwise heavy on meat
There's virtually no vegetable that can't be grilled to mouthwatering perfection, as long you prepare it correctly. Even asparagus and spinach can be grilled if you use the right method.
Here you'll find several recipes for grilled vegetables to give you a good idea of all the possibilities.
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For example, this is how I grill fennel, bell peppers, zucchini, eggplant, radicchio and Swiss chard.
Here's how to do it:
Mixed Grilled Antipasti
Eggplants, bell peppers, zucchini, fennel
Juice of one lemon
Herbs to suit your tastes, e.g. thyme, basil
Good-quality olive oil
Wash the eggplants and cut them into slices 1 - 1.5 cm / 1/2 in. thick. Steep them in salted water for approx. 1/2 hour to allow the bitter juices to drain out.
Clean and prepare the zucchini and fennel and cut them lengthwise into slices. Remove the stalk of the bell pepper and cut into flat pieces.
Place them on the grill for approx. 10 minutes, turning occasionally.
Meanwhile, prepare the marinade: Mix the lemon juice, Worcester sauce, herbs, salt and garlic with the oil. You can use as much oil as you like, since the antipasti give it a very aromatic flavor and, when the antipasti are finished, you can use the oil for salad dressings.
Mix the grilled vegetables with the marinade.
Halve the small radicchios, cut larger ones so that the individual pieces are held together by the stalk.
Using a broiler oven: Put the oregano and olive oil onto the cut surfaces, place on the grill rack and grill for 5-10 minutes. When heating from below: Season in the same way, place on aluminum foil with the cut surfaces facing down.
When the radicchio starts to turn brown, remove from the grill rack and season with salt and lemon juice.
Grilled Swiss chard
Wash the Swiss chard thoroughly and remove the stems.
Cut into generous-sized strips. Form little pockets using two layers of aluminum foil. Place the Swiss chard in the pockets along with roughly chopped garlic, lemon juice and olive oil.
Place on the grill for 10 minutes.
The Swiss chard is just right when it begins to soften, but before its loses its bite.
Taste and add more seasoning if required before serving.