(A "flexitarian" = an individual who is not vegetarian, but traditionally eats less meat than typical omnivores. A bit of trivia: "flexitarian" was first introduced to the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate dictionary in 2012. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flexitarian])
The Gardener & The Grill is loaded with great tips, recipes and ideas for grilling with chapters for the following:
Flatbreads and Pizzas
Soup & Salad
Meat, Poultry & Fish
Fruits & Desserts
The book opens with a short primer on grilling techniques. Not a very elaborate primer, but techniques such as grill roasting, indirect grilling ,planking, plant-roasting, smoking and stir-grilling (using a metal wok on the grill grates) are discussed. Then the fun starts with the Pantry chapter. This chapter is brimming with inspiration. So much so that I think your grilling style will be transformed from ordinary to EXTRAordinary by the recipes in this chapter alone. There are recipes, ideas and tips for making your own seasonings, salts, marinades, dressings, dipping sauces, bastes and flavored butters. I want to try all of them!
After the pantry chapter come the grilling recipes that focus on fresh, seasonal (mostly summer) vegetables, herbs and even fruit that many of us grow right in our own backyards or buy at our local farmer's market. If you love vegetables or simply want to make them more enticing for you and your loved ones, this cookbook is just what you need to spice up your summer menus. Here's a list of things I love most about this cookbook:
- Recipes or instructions for making just about everything in this cookbook from scratch, even down to the homemade corn tortillas, flatbreads, naan and pizza dough.
- Tips for container gardening, raised bed gardening, companion planting, how to prep produce for grilling and even using edible flowers in recipes.
- Recipes are simple with only a few ingredients, yet have gourmet flare.
- Recipes are healthfully plant-based and promote sustainability.
Each and every recipe in The Gardener & The Grill appeals to me, but if I had to design a menu using one recipe from each chapter, I'd go with the following:
Chard-Wrapped Goat Cheese on the Grill
Herb-Stuffed Afghan Flatbread
Smoked Tomato Bisque
Tandoori Turkey Burgers with Grilled Red Onions and Tomatoes
OR Peppered Tuna with Grilled Peach, Red Bell Pepper and Onion Relish
Charred Green Beans with Lemon Verbena Pesto
Grilled Cantaloupe Rings with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
OR Skewered Strawberry & Marshmallow S'mores
Sounds delicious, right? I can't wait to try these recipes! I think I might just make the strawberry s'mores this weekend if it stops raining and I can actually get a fire going to grill the berries and marshmallows!
I borrowed The Gardener & The Grill from the library, but I'll be adding this one to my kitchen bookshelf for sure!
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