Last week I went along to Cook at Cook the Books for some outdoor grilling inspiration. A lovely evening for it. It still cools fairly quickly once the sun goes down but balmy Summer nights are definitely almost upon us. You can't really beat the longer, warmer evenings and cranking up the BBQ. Gather a few friends together, grill a little meat, quickly toss together some salad, cut some fresh bread and pop open a little vino and you have a perfect summer evening.
And it needn't just be meat you are grilling, these grilled vegetables would suffice as a meal all by themselves. At Cook the Books they were marinated in a herby balsamic vinaigrette and drizzled with a little lemon tahini dressing, which was delicious. Today I kept it a little lighter with lemon zest and chilli and to dress a little yoghurt dressing with lemon, garlic and cumin all topped with some crunchy dukkah. It needn't even just be grilling we smoked chicken too, but more on that later.
Grilled Vegetables with Lemon Cumin Yoghurt and Dukkah
This is not really a recipe...you can mix it up with what ever vegetables you like or have on hand. The same goes for the marinade, any mix of your favourite herbs will work, don't like chilli just leave it out, like coriander, bash some seeds in a mortar and pestle and through them in to the mix too. I think feta or goat cheese crumbled over the top would be heavenly. Perhaps some grilled halloumi or olives or sun dried tomatoes. The options really are endless, so I can see a myriad of variations making an appearance over Summer. If you are feeding a crowd it can also be made ahead and dressed just before serving.
1 eggplant, cut in to 1/2 - 1cm slices
1 red pepper, sliced in to 1cm strips
1 yellow pepper, sliced in to 1cm strips
Bunch asparagus spears, cut in to 3cm lengths
1 fennel bulb, cut in to 1/2 cm thick slices
6 mushrooms, cut in to 1cm thick slices
|Mint, Oregano, Thyme|
2-3 sprigs thyme, leaves only
2-3 sprigs oregano, leaves only
Small bunch mint, roughly chopped
Small bunch basil, roughly chopped
Zest and juice 1 lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp white wine vinegar, I used some Muscatel vinegar which has a wonderful sweetness.
1 red chilli, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper
Lemon Cumin Yoghurt
1 cup natural yoghurt
Zest 1 lemon
1/2 tsp cumin
1 small garlic clove, minced
Small pinch chilli flakes
Salt & pepper
Place all vegetables in a zip lock bag. In a small bowl add all the marinade ingredients and mix well to combine. Add the marinade in to the zip lock bag and seal. Give all the vegetables a good massage make sure that they are all coated in the herby lemony marinade. Place in the fridge for a couple of hours.
Heat up a griddle pan or BBQ and grill the vegetables, no additional oil needed. Grill in batches if need be, you want all the vegetables to be able to lie flat on the grill to get those lovey grill marks that will deliver a lovely smokey flavour. Grill until tender and then place all the vegetables on a serving platter.
For the dressing place the yoghurt, lemon zest, cumin and chilli flakes into a small bowl. Mix well and season to taste. Make the dressing half an hour or so before serving to allow the flavours to all come together.
Drizzle the dressing over the vegetables and a generous scattering of dukkah. Perfect on it's own or for the carnivores add a little grilled chicken.
The vegetables are smokey and the dressing adds a little zesty creaminess all topped with a little nutty crunch from the dukkah. I see many appearances over the Summer months.
If you like this you might like this Thyme & Orange Couscous, Summer Vegetables & Pomegranate Dressing
One Year Ago Broad Bean Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette