Ah, sweet summertime – the perfect time to get outdoors and make the most of your grill. But your grill isn’t just for meat, there are tons of fresh veggies in season to throw on the grill along with the main course. McGonigle’s is breaking down the best seasonal veggies to throw on the grill, as well as the best ways you can prepare them for dinner tonight!
Zucchini and summer squash are in their prime towards the end of summer and taste great on the grill. Zucchini may be sliced, lengthwise, and placed directly on the grill or wrapped up in aluminum foil to cook for 20 minutes. Be careful not to put them too close to the open flame, as the skins burn easily. Squash pairs well with most meats, but especially with a nice, juicy steak.
Cooking Tip: Vegetables tend to dry out when cooking, especially on an open flame, so don’t forget to brush them all with oil before. For added flavor, marinate them with your favorite oil based dressing!
Sweet Summer Peppers
Midsummer sweet peppers such as Gypsy and Marconi Rosso are just now ripening, and these are wonderful grilling or roasting peppers. Because of their natural flavoring, not a lot of seasoning is required, but after oiling, add a little salt and ground pepper to enhance flavor.
Next, place them on the grill, skin-side up and covered for 4-5 minutes, then gently turn them over and cook, covered, for another 3-4 minutes. They should appear slightly charred on each side. These make a nice side dish for grilled chicken, as well as beef.
Charred heirloom tomatoes are a perfect pairing for just about any meal, but especially fish. Some cooking experts say to slice them, others recommend cooking them whole.
For sliced tomatoes, sprinkle with salt and pepper, a maybe a little oregano, thyme, or garlic. Cook these for a minute or two on each side and use them for a caprese salad, or as a flavorful addition to any grilled sandwich or burger!
Corn on the Cob
And, there’s always the all-time favorite veggie for the grill – corn on the cob. There are two ways to go about grilling corn on the cob. The first, is barbecuing corn with the shucks on for about 20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes to prevent burning and assure overall cooking. Remove, let cool a bit and shuck, immediately applying herb or barbecue butter.
Another option is to husk first, soak the ears in water for about 20 minutes, slather in butter and wrap in foil. Next, cook the corn for the same length of time, turning every 5 minutes or so. Enjoy corn on the cob at any backyard barbecue as a favorite summertime side!
Helpful Tip: Have leftovers? Try making a tasty grilled corn salsa with whatever is left!
Say what? Yep, grilled watermelon! Slice the melon in wedges, about 1 1/2 inches thick. The rind can stay on or be cut off, depending upon how you’ll be enjoying them. Sprinkle with salt and place the wedges on their on edge to drain for 30 minutes or so. This decreases the water content, while also enhancing the watermelon’s natural flavors and sugar content.
Next, lightly brush with oil and place on the grill for about 5 minutes for beautiful grill marks and unforgettable flavor. Toss the watermelon in a salad with some tangy goat cheese and a balsamic glaze, or enjoy on its own for a fun summer side!
McGonigle’s takes pride in our local farmers and vendors, which is why we provide local seasonal items whenever possible. If you’re interested in what local seasonal vegetables are available in-store, give us a call anytime at (816) 444-4720 and we’d be happy to inform you of our freshest local ingredients!
Stop by McGonigle’s Market all year round for the freshest seasonal fruits and vegetables in Kansas City, and check out our blog for tips, tricks, and seasonal recipes!