I’m trying to cook on my grill as much as possible because the nice weather for grilling always slips away quickly as August comes to a close and September begins. This week's CSA share contained Melrose peppers, which are widely grown in the Chicago area. According to my research, they coveted for their ability to bring back memories of warm Italian homes and Mom’s cooking.
The peppers are thin-skinned and sweet. A popular way to prepare them is fried in olive oil with tomato and onions. They can be roasted, as well, and stacked atop sausage sandwiches.
I love grilled peppers, so that’s what I opted to do with my batch of Melrose peppers—just a little olive oil, salt and pepper and a nice char on the grill.
Other vegetables that hit the grates this week: cherry tomatoes wrapped in a foil packet with chopped garlic, oil, salt and pepper; corn; and purple beans.
For the Cuppa Joe bicolor sweet corn, I followed a recipe for Mexican-style grilled corn. I especially enjoyed the chili-lime mayo. I slathered my ear of corn lightly and had to go back for another coating because it was so tasty.
Often, I think sugar beets need more balance for their sweetness. I usually roast them (sometimes with other root vegetables). This time, I decided to roast them and then use them in a salad. My goal was to counteract the sweetness of the beets with some bitter lettuce, creamy white beans, and a tart vinaigrette. I thought the resulting salad did a good job of enhancing the beets’ natural sweet taste instead of having it overpower the dish.
I have trouble with summer squash. I like to eat it, but I haven’t stumbled upon any recipes that I think are worth making again. Often, after sifting through pages of recipes, I'm still uninspired and resort to delicious loaves of zucchini bread.
However, I finally have found a recipe I want to make again. It was delicious, and I can't wait to actually grill it next time. While cooking, my grill blew out because it was a windy day, and the squash had to head back inside for oven roasting. (If a grill blows out, it shouldn't be relighted. The propane can build up inside and create a dangerous fireball.)
My bag of white albino pickling cucumbers looked like regular pickling cukes—just paler. I eat pickles with burgers, with tuna salad, with sandwiches, and straight out of the jar. Last year, I found this amazing recipe from Smitten Kitchen that I riff on for my fridge pickles. I add garlic and thinly sliced jalapenos (I like spicy pickles, and you also can eat the lightly-pickled jalapenos) and use fresh dill, but otherwise I follow it to the letter.
It’s not a vegetable recipe, but to me, a summer grilling post doesn’t feel complete without a plug for my favorite sambal chicken skewers. They’re sticky and spicy and exactly what chicken fresh off the grill should be.
What’s your favorite recipe for summer squash?