Sitting on the deck with a cup of rich coffee on a warm early Spring morning fills me with the excitement of the season. As gaze at the beautiful hues of the blooming trees, flowers and garden the first thing that comes to this culinary obsessed mind is GRILLING!
Although the Henderiks clan uses the grill throughout the year…Spring & Summer are the most fun!! There is an abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs available to help whip together lighter meals. Grilling is an awesome way to prepare mouthwatering dishes without added fat or calories and is a perfect way to prepare quick and easy weekday dinners and casual gatherings for family and friends. It also motivates you to cook at home on weekends instead of going out. Alfresco dining rocks and will motivate you and everyone at your table to eat light & fresh. Even the most apprehensive cook will be inspired to “turn up the heat”.
Grilling is not just for protein. You can grill just about any fresh fruit or vegetable to intensify flavor. Experiment with light marinades, dressings, rubs and sauces to enhance the taste of grilled items. Be daring and try new herbs and spices! Marinades and rubs are a great way to add flavor to foods and can be used on any protein: chicken, center-cut pork chops, lean red meat, tofu … anything! Vinaigrette dressings easily double as a marinade and triple as a sauce. Just reduce in a small pan and pour over the dish.
Can’t talk grilling without talking sides. One of my favorite Spring grilling accompaniments is SALSA. Think of salsa as a cold mixture of your favorite fresh fruits, veggies and herbs that create an awesome bed on which to rest savory grilled protein. Salsa is so versatile, and you can change the ingredients to your liking — so if you don’t like mango, use peaches; if cilantro is not your herb of choice, use basil. Just about every fruit and herb will make a great salsa!
Now get out there and fire up the grill!!