Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Rules to Grill By: Tips for Grilling Vegetables

Here are a few pointers to make grilling vegetables a snap every time!

One of the most important things to remember to do is make sure you cut your vegetables approximately the same thickness so that they cook evenly.
Grill veggies over medium heat and be sure turn them often to avoid overcooking/burning. Never leave vegetables unattended unlike meat which can be somewhat forgiving vegetables are very time and heat sensitive.
Brush or drizzle oil on vegetables for added flavor and to help vegetables from sticking but DO NOT oil the grill itself because that can lead to flare up and charred vegetables.
The grill surface should be CLEAN to avoid sticking (prior to heating).
Secure thick slices of onion (at least 3/4" thick) with tooth picks to ensure they don't fall apart on the grill.
Parboil small, waxy potatoes or thick slices of sweet potatoes (at least 1" thick) until just tender. Let them cool to room temperature before you grill them.
You should also try basting grilled sweet potatoes with a little rum butter just before you serve them. To make Rum Butter, simple combine 2 tbsp butter, 6 tbsp light brown sugar, 2 tbsp rum, and 1/4 tsp vanilla in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Stir until melted and then brush or drizzle over grilled sweet potatoes. I swear they'll be the hit of the party.

Soak sweet corn in cold water for 1 hour prior to grilling. This will help the corn to stay juicy. I grilled corn in the husk instead of using aluminum foil. Simply remove the silk, soak and grill for 15 minutes over medium heat, rolling the cob every 3 minute or so.
When grilling large mushrooms like Portobello, remove the stem and start by grilling them stem-side up. This allow the natural juices to collect and the natural flavors of the mushroom are enhanced.

Don't crowd your skewers - leave about 1/8 of space between chunks of vegetables. This helps speed the cooking process and allows vegetables to cook evenly. 

For grilling smaller pieces of vegetables, try using foil packets or a grilling basket so the veggies don't fall through the grate. If you make foil packs, be sure to use heavy duty aluminum foil so they will stands up to the heat of the grill.
If you are grilling kebabs  soak your wooden skewers in water for 30 minutes before you skewer your vegetables and start grilling. This will keep your skewers from burning away while you are cooking. 

I like to toss grilled vegetables with flavored butters like garlic butter or Burger Nirvana Butter for a delicious finish!
Happy Grilling!
What is your favorite vegetable on the grill? Do you have any tricks or tips your could share?

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