True Confessions: I’m always looking for ways to get the Grill-Meister to eat more vegetables. I like the challenge.
The latest effort was this salad with grilled vegetables and fresh mozzarella “pearls” on a bed of romaine, tossed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and a surprise ingredient – golden raisins. It got the Grill-Meister’s Seal of Approval, a certification that is quite difficult to attain when vegetables are involved!
Here’s how to do it.
Grilled Vegetable Salad with Mozzarella and Golden Raisins
Makes 6-8 servings as a side dish, 4 as a vegetarian main course
- 1 fresh zucchini, sliced in 1/2 inch rounds
- 1 fresh yellow squash, sliced in 1/2 inch rounds
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced longways, in about 1 1/2 inch widths
- 1/2 medium red onion, sliced in 1/2 inch rounds and separated
- 2 tbsp olive oil, in all
- 1 tbsp good-quality balsamic vinegar
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup golden raisins
- 3/4 cup fresh mozzarella “pearls”
- 2 cups sliced or torn romaine
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- optional garnishes: 1 green onion, thinly sliced, 1 tsp chopped parsley
Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to high heat. Toss the vegetables in a medium bowl with 1 TBSP of the olive oil, then grill for 3-4 minutes per side until the vegetables have nice grill marks but are still nicely al dente. Return the vegetables to the bowl and toss the with the remaining tbsp of olive oil, the balsamic vinegar, garlic and golden raisins. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste and let the vegetables rest until they are room temperature, then add in the mozzarella pearls.
Distribute the romaine across an attractive serving platter, then place the grilled vegetable / mozzarella mixture on top. Add a little more pepper and garnish with the green onions and parsley.
The Grill-Meister was amazed that he liked this, and especially amazed that it would be good at room temperature (he was expecting the grilled vegetables to be served hot as per usual). The sweetness of the golden raisins and the balsamic vinegar are a perfect foil for the earthiness of the grilled vegetables and garlic, and the crunch of the romaine alongside the creamy mozzarella pearls provides a nice textural balance. This dish is a easy stunner.
And one more thing: you can dress it up to be a main course by adding slices of grilled chicken, or if you’re going vegetarian, slices of grilled tofu or portobello mushrooms.
© 2018 Glover Gardens