Monday, June 7, 2010

still grilling


The pleasures of the season are coming hard and fast. To spend as much time outdoors as possible I am grilling in my back yard at least two or three times a week. This weekend I came up with a dish which will be my go-to recipe for the summer: a grilled vegetable salad with mango. The addition of grilled mango to the vegetables added a perfect sweet-tart-fruity and refreshing zing. I am going to experiment with grilled peaches and pineapple as variations on this theme.
Grilled fruit on its own is delicious and paired with grilled vegetables, SUBLIME!

Vegetables and fruit are cut into flat wedges to go on the grill.

Threading cherry tomatoes on to a skewer will keep them from rolling around the grill when cooking. I want to try this with grapes. I wonder how they would taste grilled?
Sometimes I cut peppers up before grilling, sometimes I just throw them on whole.

Grilled Vegetable Salad with Mango

Fruit and Vegetables for the grill:
1/4 cup Olive oil or vegetable oil 
2 Bell peppers- left whole
1 sweet onion- sliced into wedges with the root still attached
3 carrots- cut into diagonal wedges
1 zucchini- cut into diagonal wedges
1 pint cherry tomatoes- threaded onto wooden skewers
1 mango, peeled and sliced into flat wedges

Lightly brush all everything with some olive oil. Cook each of the vegetables and fruit over a hot coal fire for about 8 minutes on each side. For the whole bell peppers, allow them to blacken on all sides, then remove from the grill and let them cool under a dish towel to capture the steam. When the peppers are cool to the touch, peel off the blackened skin and cut the flesh into two inch wide strips, discarding the stem, inner membranes and seeds. Place all cooked vegetables and fruit in a large bowl and toss together.

1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon dried mustard
3 Tbs. red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbs. chopped fresh herbs (a single herb or any combination of: parsley, basil, chives, tarragon, dill, mint)

Combine first five ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, whisking as you go to make an emulsion. Add the fresh herbs and taste to adjust seasonings. Pour vinaigrette over the grilled vegetables and fruit. Cover and refrigerate. Serve cold or at room temp.

Serves four.

This recipe has "summertime" written all over it. Therefore, an equally "summery" wine would be an ideal match! Commonly known as a light dessert wine, Moscato d'Asti would be perfect here. I can't think of a better choice for Deb's Grilled Vegetable and Mango salad. Even if a wine has a particular "label" associated with it, like "dessert wine", don't be afraid to experiment with it by trying it with different foods.

Moscato d'Asti hails from Piedmont, Italy. Slightly "frizzante" with a low alcohol content (typically about 5%), this sparkler has lush, rich, fresh fruit flavors of peach, apricot and honey. Made from white Moscato grapes, the wine gives off a wonderfully fragrant bouquet. Simply delicious! The sweetness and refreshing characteristics of the mango bring out the best in Deb's dish, and will really make a nice connection with the Moscato. My mouth waters just thinking about it!

One of the most talented makers of Moscato d'Asti is Stephano Perrone, whose formidable reputation rests on the production of his two Moscatos: Sourgal and Clarte. Both are exquisite - summertime in a glass! The Clarte has even been rated Italy's finest Moscato! Moscatos typically range from $15-$20. Another fine producer is La Spinetta. If you have not yet had the extreme pleasure of sipping Moscato on a hot summer's day, and would like to try one, both of these producers are worth seeking out.


  1. This is my summer food fantasy! I just learned something new last week when I was in LA--some people eat the skin of the mango. My sis-in-law washed a farmers market mango and just started slicing wedges out of it. I tried it and it's really good! My brother claims the skin is the best part...

  2. What a great tip! I will try that.

  3. Ooh, you're so lucky to have outdoor space to grill in! That salad looks amazing, and I love the top photo of the flowers.

  4. those photos are making me develop cravings!
    so grilling above my neighbors heads, this is a faux pas, no??

  5. In my extreme youth I attempted to grill over a hibachi perched on a fire escape. It did not take me long to see the folly in the plan!

  6. OK. I just have to say I made this last night and it was OUTRAGEOUSLY delicious. I thought it would be good, but since I have never tried this combination with the grilled mango, it totally exceeded my expectations! I included mint, chives and dill in my vinaigrette. The flavor of the mint really added a special touch which I absolutely loved. I ate pieces of all the different veggies together and was in heaven! Especially the mango with the grilled onion! I enjoyed it with a bowl of very chilled gazpacho which I had made the night before, topped with a little chopped avocado. I couldn't stop eating! Thanks, Deb, for another winner! By the way, I wasn't drinking, but the salad 100% confirmed my choice of wine - Moscato would be ideal with this!


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