Jason Sellers of Plant, a vegan restaurant on Merrimon Avenue, has one tip for Fourth of July: “Grill everything,” he says. “For example, if you’re serving cold sandwiches, grill some romaine lettuce lightly first. The added taste of the flame will liven up the other sandwich ingredients.”
Sellers provided this vegetarian summer grill, a dish he calls an “unexpected combination. The sweetness of the broccoli and peppers matches with the bitterness of the radicchio and is elevated by the mildly pungent leeks.”
1 head broccoli, trimmed to desired length, cut into 4 equal portions
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, cut in half lengthwise and washed
2 large red bell peppers, seed and pith removed, quartered
2 heads radicchio, stem trimmed, quartered
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons good-quality balsamic vinegar
Splash of dry white wine
1/3 cup of your favorite fresh minced herbs (thyme, parsley, tarragon)
Salt and pepper to taste
Fill a pan with enough water to cover the broccoli, bring to a boil and add a small handful of salt. Add the broccoli and cook for 30 seconds. Strain and cool the broccoli immediately (you can shock in ice water, but it’s not necessary). Combine the leeks, pepper and radicchio in a large bowl. Mix the oil, vinegar, wine and herbs in a separate bowl, then add them to the vegetables. Toss to coat the vegetables, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Grill the vegetables away from the hottest spot of your grill. This way, you can add grill marks carefully and infuse the vegetables with the taste of the grill without overcooking them. Serve the vegetables in 4 equal portions, arranging them so that the varied colors and shapes set a stage for your other foods.
— Plant is located at 165 Merrimon Ave. For more, call 258-7500 or visit http://www.plantisfood.com.