Veggie, veggie, bo beggie, banana fana fo feggie……No, I am not becoming a vegetarian. Yes, I just really, really love vegetables. If only I was always this way, my mom would have had such an easier time feeding me. When I was a kid, I pretty much only ate lettuce, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, corn, radishes and lima beans. Still pretty adventurous for a kid I guess, but I’m so much better now. Check out this salad. Its got zucchini, yellow squash, bell peppers, fennel…..FENNEL for chrissake! Ok, I know I’m 30 years old and shouldn’t be bragging about the variety of vegetables that I eat, I just can’t believe I spent so much time without all these yummy little guys. Even in my ripe old age, I’m still adding new things. Recently I even started eating mushrooms. Go me!
This year I grew a bunch of herbs, some hot peppers, and strawberries. Next year I’m for sure going to grow some zucchini, tomatoes and maybe even some lettuce! I only wish I could start now. I know people are all pumped about fall coming, but I’m an eternal summer gal, (that’s why I moved to San Diego) which means tank tops, flip flops, and fresh vegetables year round.
Grilled Vegetable Salad with Feta recipe from Fine Cooking
1 small or 1/2 medium fennel bulb with fronds attached
1 medium orange bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and cut lengthwise into 4 or 5 pieces
1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 medium zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 medium yellow squash, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 Tbs. red wine vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
1-1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (2-1/2 oz.)
3 Tbs. loosely packed thinly sliced fresh basil
Cut the stalks off the fennel bulb. Remove about 1/4 cup of the fronds from the stalks, chop the fronds, and reserve. Cut the fennel in quarters lengthwise and trim away most of the core, leaving just enough intact to keep the layers together. Slice the quarters lengthwise 1/4 inch thick.
Prepare a medium gas or charcoal grill fire (alternatively, use an indoor grill pan over medium-high heat). Arrange the vegetables in a single layer on a tray or work surface. Brush both sides of the vegetables with 2 Tbs. of the olive oil and season with 1/4 tsp. salt.
Grill the vegetables in batches, flipping once, until both sides are nicely charred and the vegetables are just tender, about 12 minutes total for the fennel, 10 minutes total for the pepper, and 6 minutes total for the onion and squash. When the vegetables are cool enough to handle, cut them into 1/2-inch dice and transfer to a large bowl.
In a small bowl, whisk the remaining 2 Tbs. olive oil, the vinegar, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Toss the vegetables with the dressing. Gently stir in the tomatoes and fennel fronds. Season to taste with more salt and pepper. Divide the salad among 4 plates and sprinkle with the feta and basil.
I served mine with “birds”, which is what my dad calls cornish hens. Delish!
I’m sooooooooooooo glad its Friday today! I’ve had some motivation issues this week, so I’m looking forward to being able to do nothing and not feel guilty about it! Have a great weekend everyone!