Veggie skewers on the grill: Memorial Day cookout wisdom
Basically everyone in the U.S. is getting ready to cut things up and cook them with fire this upcoming Memorial Day afternoon. In these modern times, though, particularly in a city of eclectic tastes, you can’t be sure you’ll please everyone with the typical holiday meat feasts of yore.
A good grillmaster accommodates the whole party, so here’s an all-veggie idea that will have practically everyone at your cookout asking where you got the recipe.
These are really the killer app of vegetable grilling. Everyone will love these. everyone. This is a promise.
What you’ll need:
- Yellow squash
- Purple onion
- Yellow onion
- Bell peppers (all colors)
- Brussels sprouts
These are the bare essentials. True adventurers can try asparagus, broccoli, cloves of garlic, pickled peppers, artichoke hearts, okra, poblanos, etc. Be creative! You’re going to chop all this up into bite-size bits, throw it into a marinade and leave it overnight.
For the marinade, you’ll need a vinaigrette type thing. Standard Italian dressing from the supermarket works just dandy for this purpose, but be warned: parmesan cheese is not vegetarian. Check the ingredients if you’ve got strict meatless folks in the crowd.
To that you’ll add about a third of a cup of soy sauce and a quarter cup of pure balsamic vinegar per bottle of your dressing base. Worcestershire sauce makes an excellent addition as well, but that magical stuff is typically made with anchovies. Edward & Sons makes a fine fishless variety for truly all-vegetable deliciousness.
The best veggie skewers present a real mix of flavors and textures, so these additions come recommended:
- Apples (preferably Granny Smith)
- Tomatoes (cherry or grape)
- Strawberries (the firmer the better)
- Potatoes (new potatoes are best, tiny whole ones, parboil them first)
The apples and strawberries you can chuck into the marinating bowl as well, if you’re fancy.
When it’s grill time, drain the marinade from the stuff and soak a big batch of bamboo skewers in water for half an hour before the skewering and the fire. For an extra interactive touch, lay the ingredients out in a deep tray or a shallow bowl and let people stab together their own helpings. They're ready after less than five minutes over the coals.
They will be a hit! Also, if you’re omnivore to the core, mixing this preparation in with hunks of chicken, steak, tuna, pork, tilapia, salami or other tasty critter bits has a strong track record as a successful idea.
Give it a try. What’s there to lose? Everyone, especially vegans, will thank you.