Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Grilled Med Salad with Greek-inspired Dressing

During this diet change, I've discovered I really like international foods more. Sure before, we had Chinese take out and went to Bangkok Royal and Clay Pot in Waco but I always got Pad Thai and the Chicken Clay Pot. Even "Mediterranean", which admittedly isn't often that crazy as far as difference goes, was snubbed beforehand. I still don't have a container of pomegranate molasses in the pantry but we do have two overflowing racks of spices on the counter now. I will say going mostly vegan has caused a greater appreciation for the use of spices.

Vegetables marinated in homemade greek dressing make a fantastic base for a filling dish - Crossing The DelebearGrilled Mediterranean Salad, based loosely off of http://cravingsomethinghealthy.com/mediterranean-grilled-vegetable-salad/ 

 This is not a pretty salad once all combined but it tastes fantastic, it also looks much nicer when just the veggies are laid out fresh off the grill. I did make quite
 a few changes to the recipe to reflect our tastes and where I saw some gaps.

First things first, thanks to the Oh She Glows cookbook, we've started marinating veggies for at least 30 mn before grilling to get better flavor. So usually around mid-afternoon I'll chop or slice the vegetables as needed and pour the dressing over everything and let them stew, turning carefully every hour or so, as time allowed.

We discovered the other week that we love artichoke hearts. It's a sweeter vegetable and tastes *fantastic* grilled so we doubled the amount of artichoke hearts.

The dressing I made is based off of Zoe's Kitchen but minus the canola oil and with a lazy herb mix. 

Instead of using just plain chickpeas, I make spiced roasted chickpeas using the same spice blend as the dressing. 

I also tossed the farro in garlic and salt. 


Vegetables marinated in homemade greek dressing make a fantastic base for a filling dish - Crossing The Delebear
Here's what you need for the Grilled Med Salad:

1 medium purple eggplant, peeled and sliced lengthwise 1/4-1/3" thick
2 zucchini or summer squash, sliced 1/4-1/3" thick lengthwise
2 cans artichoke hearts, drained and rinsed, halved
1 red or orange bell pepper, cored and halved
1 sweet onion, sliced into 1/2" rings (cut counter-intuitively for dicing, hold the stem and root at the equator, not the poles, and slice straight through)
1 cup greek salad spiced chickpeas
1 cup cooked farro, tossed in 2 cloves minced garlic and a pinch each of koshers salt and pepper
double recipe Greek dressing

Place all of the prepared vegetables into a large bowl. Pour enough greek dressing over it all to to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour, tossing occasionally to make sure everything is coated with the herb mixture. Be careful with the artichokes as they are delicate.

Heat your grill or grill pan over medium heat.

Work in 2-3 batches. Lay vegetables out, rotating 45 degrees to get nice grill marks and flip, repeat until cooked through. You need to shake off extra oil or it will smoke (less of a problem outside but still a concern for flare up.) Artichokes need the least amount of time.

Once cooked, lay all of the vegetables in groups by type (squash, artichoke, eggplant, etc). Chop into bite size pieces. Place on a platter or large shallow bowl for serving.

Serve over mescalin mix with farro, chickpeas and extra dressing as needed.

Here's what you need for the Greek dressing (barely adapted from Stone and Feather's take on it):

1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup Olive Oil
1 T Italian Herb mix
pinch each salt and ground pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder

Mix together. I usually pour directly into a mason jar and shake.

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