vegetable-kebab-1318108It’s true. For example, if you have a hankering for a grilled grass fed burger or veggie burger, wouldn’t that burger be better with grilled or roasted organic red and gold peppers? Or topped with a fat
slice of organically grown heirloom tomato and/or sweet red onion?

And let’s not forget the lettuce that can be shredded or placed on top like a crown. Or how about some sliced Hass avocado or guacamole for some healthy fat instead of cheese? Avocados contain monounsaturated fats — heart-healthy fats proven to help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and boost HDL (good) cholesterol. Perhaps some thinly sliced jalapeños to add a little spice. Now that’s a burger that could become a summertime tradition.

If you decide that burgers aren’t your fare, you could try some grilled lamb or tempeh with organic spring mix for a savory salad. Sound good? Don’t stop there. Why not top it off with some grilled eggplant or fennel?

Or how about that big breakfast you make when family and friends come to visit? Wouldn’t those pancakes be just a little tastier with fresh blueberries in the batter? Or the egg scramble would be awfully bland if it didn’t have chopped green onions, garlic, Anaheim peppers, and cherry tomatoes added to it, right? Even cereal is better with fresh peach or nectarine slices swimming with your flakes in a pool of cool milk. And of course Fresh-squeezed OJ makes any breakfast better.

For those who like a refreshing afternoon drink, there would be no smooth in smoothie without the banana. Spearmint leaves make any glass of lemonade seem fresher and let’s face it, spearmint makes a mojito a mojito.

That grilled chicken or tofu looks pretty lonely on the plate without corn on the cob and potato salad. Grilled fish is begging for some lightly steamed green beans and a tomato/cucumber salad. Switching out your kebob skewer with a rosemary sprig brings out the flavor of whatever you have on it. And without potatoes, peppers, corn, onion or tomato, it’s just not the same. Need a shish kebab recipe that is full of healthy vegetables? Try this grilled vegetable recipe, its tasty as well as versatile. Once you’ve tried this don’t be afraid to do some different combinations, you’ll be glad you did.

Grilled Vegetable Kebabs

1⁄2 cup olive oil
3 zucchini
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 onion
12 oz halved mushrooms

Whisk the vinegar and oil and set aside. Cut each bell pepper into 12 inch-wide pieces. Cut the zucchini into 12 half-inch slices. Cut the onion into 12 pieces. Thread the vegetables, alternately, on to four large skewers. Marinate the kebobs in the oil and vinegar mixture for 15 minutes. Grill them over medium coals for 12 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and slightly browned, turning them once. Serve hot. (Makes 4)

Fresh Perspectives (August 2009)