Grilled vegetable medley with herbed basting sauce
Here's a tasty, cholesterol-free way to get 5 to 9 veggies a day, as recommended for good nutrition, cancer prevention, heart health and other benefits.
1 large sweet potato, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch slices
1 large carrot, peeled, cut on diagonal into 1/2-inch slices
2 parsnips, peeled, cut on diagonal into 1/2-inch slices
1 large zucchini, trimmed, cut lengthwise into quarters
1 large red onion, cut into 3/4-inch slices
1 large red bell pepper, seeded, cut into 6 lengthwise strips
1 large green bell pepper, seeded, cut into 6 lengthwise strips
1 small eggplant (about 1 lb.), cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices
2 Portobello mushrooms, stems removed, cut in halves
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Salt* to taste
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
3 peeled garlic cloves, finely minced
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh thyme, or 1/2 tsp. crushed dried thyme
1 1/2 tablespoons finely minced fresh tarragon, or 3/4 tsp. crush dried tarragon
Combine all basting sauce ingredients in medium saucepan until well blended. Heat over medium-low heat until warm. Season to taste with salt* and pepper. Sauce can be made a half-day ahead and stored in refrigerator. Before using, heat over low heat until warm.
Heat grill or oven broiler. Arrange vegetables in single layer on large, non-stick baking sheet or pan. With pastry brush, lightly coat vegetables with basting sauce, tossing vegetables with slotted spoon so all sides are lightly coated.
Grill vegetables until tender and lightly charred, brushing occasionally with basting sauce if vegetables seem to be drying out.
Begin with those vegetables that take the longest and end with those needed the least cooking time: sweet potato, carrot, parsnip; then, zucchini, onion, bell pepper. End with eggplant, mushroom.
Turn vegetables with large, slotted spoon so they are evenly grilled on all sides.
As each batch of vegetables is done, transfer to serving platter and keep warm.
Season grilled vegetables with salt* and pepper, to taste, before serving.
Serve with brown rice, whole grain bread or whole grain pita.*