Summer Harvest Antipasto
Serves: 6 to 8
At the peak of summer, our produce department at PCC virtually glows with a stunning selection of gorgeous, local veggies. One of my favorite ways to take advantage of this bounty is to gather up all my favorites, prep them as simply as possible, brush them with a garlic-infused olive oil and cook them up on the grill. If you add some peppery olives, silky prosciutto, creamy cheeses and great bread you have a feast!
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped Add to list
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil Add to list
- Salt and pepper, to taste Add to list
- 1 small to medium eggplant Add to list
- 1 medium artichoke (or use 2 to 3 small artichokes) Add to list
- 1 lemon, halved Add to list
- 1 bulb fennel Add to list
- 1 red bell pepper (or use small multicolored sweet peppers) Add to list
- 2 small to medium zucchini Add to list
- 1 leek Add to list
- Chiffonade basil for garnish Add to list
- Assorted accoutrement (see suggestions in Notes) Add to list
Stir the garlic into the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Cut both ends from the eggplant and with a vegetable peeler, remove strips of peel lengthwise, leaving some of the peel on, so that the eggplant has a striped look. Cut the eggplant into 1/2-inch thick slices crosswise.
Remove any dried or discolored outer leaves from the artichoke. Cut into quarters and remove the furry choke inside. Rub all of the surfaces with a cut lemon.
Remove the green stems from the fennel bulb and cut the bulb into 1/4-inch thick slices lengthwise. Stem and seed the bell pepper and cut it into 8 pieces. Cut the zucchini into 1/2-inch thick slices on a long diagonal. Cut the leek into 1/2-inch thick slices on a long diagonal.
Brush or rub all of the veggies with the seasoned olive oil.
Preheat a charcoal or gas grill to high and place the artichokes on the grill. Cover the grill and cook the artichokes for 5 to 7 minutes or until they are nicely golden on one side, basting occasionally with the olive oil. Flip the artichokes. Add the eggplant, leeks and peppers and continue to cook, turning these new additions once, until all are lightly caramelized. (You can brush these lightly with the olive oil as they cook. No need to cover the grill at this point.) Add the zucchini to the grill and cook for about 2 minutes to a side.
Remove all the vegetables to a platter. Scatter with chiffonade basil and accompany with any additional summery items of your choice.
Some ideas for accompaniment
- Bread, crackers or breadsticks
See A guide to great grilling for more ideas.
Recipe by, PCC Chef
Source: Demonstrated on KING 5's "Gardening with Ciscoe" show, which aired on July 21, 2012.