From Yahoo Food’s Cookbook of the Week: My New Roots
Grilled Zucchini and Green Onions with Baby Spinach and Hazelnuts
The process of grilling is pretty miraculous to me. How can you take a relatively bland vegetable and make it taste amazing without adding to it or taking anything away—just grilling it? Perhaps it’s the kiss of extreme heat that transforms the vegetable’s sugars into something really special. Whatever the case, it’s a quick trick that results in a complete flavor makeover. For a dish with so few ingredients, you’ll be amazed at the complexity of tastes here. And even if you’re familiar with grilled zucchini, the grilled spring onions will surprise and delight. The chile brings some heat, while the hazelnuts deliver an earthy, satisfying crunch. For a more substantial meal, add some crumbled goat or sheep feta, and perhaps some lentils or chickpeas.
1 medium to large zucchini
Knob of coconut oil or ghee, melted
Flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 medium spring onions
1⁄2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil
1⁄2 garlic clove, minced
1⁄2 fresh chile, minced (Serrano is a good choice)
1⁄2 teaspoon maple syrup or raw honey
Grated zest of 11⁄2 organic lemons
A few good handfuls of baby spinach
1⁄4 cup hazelnuts, toasted if desired
Heat your grill (an indoor grill pan is fine as well).
Slice the zucchini lengthwise into thin ribbons (but not too thin or they will fall apart on the grill). Lightly rub melted oil on the zucchini slices, and season them lightly with salt and pepper. Slice and season the scallions in the same manner.
When the grill is hot, lay the zucchini and green onion slices on the grate, and cook uncovered until you have some char marks on the underside, 3 to 5 minutes. Flip them over and cook until tender and marked, another 2 minutes. Remove the vegetables from the grill and place them on a plate.
Whisk the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, chile, maple syrup, and grated zest of 1 lemon in a small bowl. Put the spinach in a serving bowl, and pour this dressing over it; toss to combine.
Roughly chop the hazelnuts. Arrange the grilled veggies on top of the spinach. Sprinkle with the hazelnuts and the remaining lemon zest, and serve.
More ways to make the most of your vegetables: