I had a jolly 'ole lover of a time travelling the isle of St. Lucia and can't wait to show off some of my pics to you tomorrow. But the one thing I missed most was my kitchen. I missed having access to my clean, organized, pink kitchen and all the familiar tastes that go along with it. I was chomping at the bit, as they say, to get back into it and get cooking.
What does "chomping at the bit" even mean? Cliches are weird things. I'll bet you're thinking "You can say that again"! Well the grass is always greener and hindsight is 20/20.
Either way, I was excited to get cooking and that is just what went down last Monday, right when I got back. I had been assigned a dream project to create five brand shiny new recipes for a major Canadian magazine. Given that I had been away for a month, all of the concepts had been approved before I left but I couldn't get testing until I came home.
Jen and I spent all day Monday cooking, creating and eating and what fun we had! Until it was time to do the dishes. I love you Ms. Jen! I really love you! I try to be tidy. Really I do, but sometimes you gotta get a little messy when you're making love in the kitchen.
I am the worst person ever with secrets, but sadly, I can't share the five amazing works of healthy culinary genius we created and tested (read: devoured). My lips are sealed until May. But oh what fun I had. I must say, the sunshine and ocean is superior for my inner and outer health, but nothing nourishes my soul quite like playing in the kitchen. So though you can't have the full recipe for this mystery dish, I will offer you a portion. The grilled veggie portion.
Now, grilled veggies are something I recommend prepping at the start of each week. This is why:
- Will jazz up any salad.
- Boost the gourmet factor of any sandwich.
- Add loads of flavour to your fave grain dish.
- Blend up with some veggie stock for an amazing soup.
- Add to a basic tortilla for insta-pizza
- Easy to transport.
- Can use almost any mix of vegetables.
Right- so on that last point- Really! Use whatever veggies you have. Add loads of garlic and onions and it will be Amazingtown!
Balsamic Loved Grilled Vegetables
1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise
1 eggplant, cut in 1/2 inch thick slices
1 red pepper, quartered
1 red onion, cut into rings
1 package / 1 dozen crimini mushrooms, stems removed
2 Tbs olive oil
5 cloves garlic, removed from bulb, skin on
1/4 cup organic sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in olive oil or water
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 tsp dried oregano
2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
sea salt a to taste
- Preheat oven to 400
- Prep zucchini, eggplant, red onion, red pepper, mushrooms, and garlic.
- In a large mixing bowl, lightly toss vegetables in 2 Tbs olive oil.
- Lay out on a pizza pan or parchment lined cookie sheet and place in oven, on middle rack.
- Grill for 20 mins. Remove from heat, turn vegetables over, and replace for additional 10 minutes.
- While vegetables are grilling, remove sun-dried tomatoes from water/oil and finely chop.
- In a small bowl mix together the dressing including lemon juice, dried oregano, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and sea salt.
- When vegetables are ready, allow to cool just enough so you can handle them.
- Slice vegetables into roughly 1 inch square pieces or long strips, whatever is your preference*.
- Peel garlic cloves and chop finely, mix garlic into dressing along with sundried tomatoes.
- Place grilled vegetables into a large mixing bowl and toss evenly with dressing.
- Sample for taste and add additional sea salt as desired.
- Fall in love
Question Of The Day: Share your best tips! What do you like to keep prepped and ready to jazz up your meal?