Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Roasted and Grilled Veggie Salad

As far as vegetables are concerned, we have been dining like kings lately. It’s all thanks to local organic farmers! Beautiful baskets of fresh, vibrant produce are delivered right to my doorstep. I don’t even have to leave the house! They come over, we have a nice chit-chat about what’s growing, observe the difference between the veggies from last batch (oh my! Look how the mustasa has grown!)...all without having to start my car (plus points for that!) :)

Of course, I still meander through the market...what’s a girl to do without her market-therapy right (no, shoe-therapy does not replace it...though they do complement each other I believe)? Plus I have to continually restock our garlic and onions, which we go through like there’s no tomorrow (please someone tell me that onions are blazingly healthy)! I hardly buy any vegetables at the market anymore though, onions and garlic aside. You see, those baskets we get keep us two nicely covered in veggies for a while. In fact, I have to race to use them all before they start to, um, complain ;)

I get my veg from two sources. One from the organic farmer I mentioned here (coincidentally delivering his first basket on my birthday!). The other is the same one who delivers to Christine. Here is where some of them went...

Roasted and Grilled Veggie Salad
  • 2 Asian eggplants (the long thin ones), sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 white onion, sliced relatively thick
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly cracked pepper
  • Herbs de Provence

- Roast the peppers. I cut them in quarters, remove all the seeds, and then lay them skin side up on a baking tray lined with parchment. Place in a 200C oven and roast until the pepper’s skin is black and blistered in places. Take the peppers out, place in a bowl, and cover with cling wrap. Leave to cool slightly. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, gently peel off skin (it will come off easily at this point), slice into strips and set aside.
- While your peppers are roasting, heat a grill pan. Brush the eggplant and onions slices with oil and grill until they are soft and have respectable grill-marks.
- Place grilled eggplants and onions (the onion rings may fall apart...that’s fine) in a bowl with the roasted and peeled peppers. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with herbs de Provence and season with salt and pepper.
- Serves two.

This is one of my favourite ways to have peppers and eggplant (aside from tortang talong) -- roasted and grilled, or just grilled or just roasted, then tossed with some good olive oil and salt. The herbs de Provence adds a lovely aroma, but if you don’t have any, feel free to use what you’ve got. Or stick to the olive oil and salt. With great veggies you really won’t need much else. This is good at room temp, so it can sit patiently while you go about making the rest of your meal. You can also add a splash of red wine vinegar and finely chopped garlic (or roast some garlic alongside the peppers and smoosh that in) and you’ll have something approaching escalivada (a Spanish salad I am extremely fond of). If you have leftovers, just park them in the fridge and toss them with some pasta the next day.

Aaah...Lovely simple vegetables! Something tells me this won’t be the last “veggie basket” post...please indulge me :) I’ll try not to be too dull and swoony!


Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

That's one of my favorite salads! Really flavorful and addictive!



MeetaK said...

yaah for fresh organic veggies. i love these kinds of salads. i have a great recipe you might like similar to this with a few Mediterranean flavors.

The colors are gorgeous!

Erin said...

I love grilling veggies, especially eggplant. The grill really intensifies the eggplants natural smokiness. The leftover salad would be great on a sandwich.

Marvin said...

I know you used an indoor grill pan, but if you're ever grilling outside, you could also just grill the peppers whole, when they begin to char, move them to a cooler part of the grill where they can continue roasting, when finished you can peel and seed as normal.

And I haven't tried this, but I've seen on TV where you can just roast bell peppers directly over the stovetop flame--just hold them directly over the fire with tongs and rotate. Though I'm not sure the method cooks them as much as it makes them easier to peel.

mtan said...

Grilled vegies are so versatile, you can stuff it into a focaccia, or make an antipasti, or add it to pasta, or add it to some japanese curry.
I wonder if you'll see a change in how your skin responds, if organic vegies will make your skin look smoother, etc.
(another form of retail therapy that is fun is checking out a new supermarket! I did that yesterday and spent a good 20 minutes imagining what I'd do with this new ingredient or that - they had grits!)

Manggy said...

Yeah, I think grilling is the only way to make eggplant appealing to me, heh :) (short of drowning it in tomato sauce)-- and roasting is a sure-fire way of getting excellent flavors from vegetables. This would also be great with farro or couscous :)

[eatingclub] vancouver || js said...

The vegetables look great and how I wish I had a farmer that delivers to my door!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Rosa! I agree...I can eat tons of this! :)

Hi Meeta! With a few Mediterranean flavours? Yes please! Is the recipe on your blog? Will go search for it :)

Hi Erin! Grilling eggplants are really a great way to prepare them...I think the smokiness is what I like most about them :) Although I don’t get too much real smokiness in my indoor grill :( Yes, definitely good in a sandwich :)

Hi Marvin! I really wish to be grilling outside! That would be awesome...more flavour plus yes I could put the peppers on the grill and get them all char-y. Unfortunately, that is not in the cards for me right now ;) Siiiiigh! In my mom’s place that’s how they would roast the peppers, on the stove top flame. I tried it here once but there’s more mess (little black stuff) and smell...not too good in my close quarters! ;)

Hi M! Hmmm...can’t tell is the skin reacted differently but it was certainly delicious! :) Where is this new supermarket?? Do tell!

Hi Manggy! I love eggplant! To each his own I suppose :) My hubby is still trying to make friends with couscous the same way I’m trying to make friends with ampalaya!

Hi JS! I’m sure you have one over there! You just gotta find him! :)

Suzana said...

Simple food is always so inspiring, isn't it? Love the colours, and different textures of this salad... yam!

Anh said...

i love this type of salad, too. But being naughty as I am, a slice of bread is essential ;).

Freya said...

What beautiful pictures - as usual!! Organic is definitely the way to go!!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Roasted, grilled veggies! Never be dull or boring. I love to enjoy salad this way Joey!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Suzana! I believe so...simplicity allows us to enjoy the pure flavours with no distractions :)

Hi Anh! We are the same...I am also naughty in that department!!! ;)

Hi Freya! Thank you! I agree and I’m so happy to have found the suppliers I did :)

Hi Tanna! I love the way roasting and grilling bring out flavours :)

Bordeaux said...

I'm envious of all the fresh produce you're enjoying. Sounds super and the results are delicious!

Helen said...

We are enjoying the same wonderful abundance of veggies at the moment and we also go through onions and garlic like there's no tomorrow! One thing we don't have though, is the chat with the farmer. We get the box delivered but alas, they only have time to leave it outside the front door. How lovely to have a good natter about the box!

Tom said...

The recipe looks great. I loved grilled vegetables.

Sophie said...

Vegetable dishes like this are always the best sides, they're not only delicious, but so healthy you can eat seconds and thirds :).

ChichaJo said...

Hi Bordeaux! I’m enjoying’s also giving me a deeper appreciation of my local produce :)

Hi Helen! I really enjoy it our short chat :) Which I think is one of the reasons I like getting these baskets...feeling closer to where my veggies come from...if that makes any sense! So are onions wildly healthy or what? ;)

Hi Tom! Thanks me too!

Hi Sophie! True, true! And easy to throw together in a pinch!

Matt said...

Hi there,

Roasted and grilled - how intense! How might one go about grilling the veggies without a barbeque on hand, would a kitchen grill work?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Matt! Since I live in a flat with no balcony (not even a window/planter box!) I have no choice but to forgo "real" bbq/grilling. I use either a grill pan on my stove top or our contact grill :)