Grilled or fire roasted vegetables have endless applications; antipasti, topping crostoni, pizza, pasta, sandwiches, salads…grilled meats, fish, and chicken…ad-infinitum! Easy to cook and they store well refrigerated. If you have a garden this is your opportunity to turn the garden bounty into delectable kitchen creations that will please everyone’s tastes.
Italian sweet peppers are a colorful and tasty addition to the roasted vegetables. However they are more delicate and better flame roasted and peeled separately, then added to roasted vegetables once they are cooked. See Chilies and Tomatoes; Grill, Broil or Roast (posted in basics).
Grilled or Roasted Vegetables
Prepare ahead; hot BBQ grill or oven preheated to 450F/220C fitted with a foil lined baking pan fitted with a baking rack
- 1 large eggplant or 6 small, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 1 large zucchini or several smaller, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely grated
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon thyme or oregano leaves
- sea salt & freshly ground pepper
- red chili flakes (optional)
- 2 large bell or Italian sweet peppers, flame roasted,skin seeds removed and cut into strips lengthwise
Place the sliced eggplant and zucchini in a colander and salt generously. Allow them to weep for 30 minutes to draw the bitterness out of the flesh. Rinse well and place on kitchen towels to dry.
Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, lemon zest, and lemon thyme in a large bowl and whisk until well combined, seasoning with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Add eggplant and zucchini and toss well to coat evenly. Set aside to marinate for 30 minutes.
Place the marinated eggplant and zucchini on the grill or onto the preheated rack set in a baking pan. Reserve the remaining marinade for basting. Grill or roast turning the vegetables several times and basting each time. Continue to grill or roast until the vegetables are lightly bronzed, but not charred! Remove from the grill or oven and cool.
Place all the vegetables in a bowl and toss, adding the flame roasted peppers along with any pan drippings left in the roasting pan and toss well.
Refrigerate if not using immediately.