I know that Labor Day has come and gone, but I can’t let grill season end without sharing what became my signature vegetable dish this summer. Actually, I should say “dishes,” as I started to make just about every vegetable in this way. Watching my cousin Richard prepare yet another delicious meal, mostly cooked on the outdoor grill, made me realize that he was on to something great. There’s no need to fuss over vegetables in the summer. Simply wrap them in aluminum foil with a little salt, pepper, olive oil or butter, and then throw them on the grill for 15 to 20 minutes, while the rest of the meal is cooking. Without a mess or bother, you have a wonderful side dish or two….or even more! I guarantee you’ll be experimenting with every vegetable imaginable. I have!
My two favorites are grilled corn and grilled fennel. The hot grill brings out the flavors of these two vegetables in a way that’s hard to explain. I prefer this to corn on the cob, and although I adore a fennel salad, this is even better.
So before the season is over, please give this a try. Its absolutely delicious in all it’s simplicity. Plus, it’s cleanup free! That is unless you make Richard’s Summertime Pasta (in the blog archives) as a first course. This pasta dish takes a simple summer meal to a new level. Richard seems to have created a perfect summertime menu that is now a “family tradition.”
4 ears of corn on the cob
3 fennel bulbs
salt and pepper
2 – 3 Tablespoons of butter
2 – 3 Tablespoons of olive oil
- Strip the corn from the cob using a good knife or corn zipper. Another cousin suggested to use a bundt pan to catch the kernels in a neat manner. LOVE this idea!
- Slice the fennel into strips….you determine the thickness.
- Lay out two sheets of aluminum foil or use heavy duty if you have it. Pile the corn onto the foil. For 4 ears of corn, use 2 -3 Tablespoons of butter; 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste. Wrap up the sides of the foil well.
- Lay out 2 more sheets of aluminum foil and add the sliced fennel. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste. Then drizzle with the oil. Mix a little, and seal up the sides of the foil.
- Place foil packages on the grill over medium heat. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes. Make sure the grill is not too hot, as you don’t want to burn the bottom.
- Once ready to serve, open the packets and give a good stir. Adjust for seasonings and place in bowls if desired. They look so nice in the open packets that you don’t even really need bowls! It’s nice to keep it even more casual. It’s up to you!