July and August are typically the peak months of fresh local produce in New England. Finding unique ways to prepare the variety of greens, carrots, squash, zucchini, eggplant, corn and other vegetables can be challenging.
Enter the grill. Summer in New England means outdoor cooking, which has the added benefit of keeping your kitchen cool. Whether you are cooking on a charcoal, propane or wood fire, preparing vegetables over an open flame offers a tasty alternative to the boiling, steaming and roasting methods usually relied upon for vegetable cookery.
The following recipe offers a new take on preparing your vegetables outdoors, including grilling your picnic-table salads. Take a risk and grill that kale!
GRILLED RAINBOW CHARD SALAD, WITH RADISH AND HERB DRESSING
Start to finish: 10-15 minutes
1 large bunch rainbow chard, washed and with woody ends trimmed
1 small bunch radishes
1 small bunch parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sour cream
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat the grill to a high temperature. Once the grill is heated, place the rainbow chard on the grill and cook for 2-3 minutes on one side. Set aside on a plate to cool.
2. Wash the radishes and pat dry, then slice finely.
3. In a small bowl, mix the vinegar, sour cream, and a sprinkle of salt and pinch of pepper. Slowly whisk in the oil until well combined. Whisk in the parsley.
4. Slice the chard in long thin ribbons and place in your salad bowl. Add the salad dressing and toss gently until well combined. Garnish with sliced radish for texture and color.
Check back for more recipes from Christopher and Marc.
While working for Mill City Grows, Christopher Horne was a FoodCorps service member and taught gardening and cooking classes to Lowell students. In 2017, Christopher graduated from The Farm School’s learn-to-farm program and now runs a half-acre market garden business that offers a small CSA service. He sells his produce to local restaurants in the Merrimack Valley area. Learn more at HorneFarms.com.
Marc Horne is a lifelong Lowell resident. He works as a community development professional, developing affordable housing in the Merrimack Valley for nonprofit organizations. Marc also assists his brother, Christopher, with farming operations at Horne Family Farms in any way he can. His personal interests are strongly centered on food and the natural environment, especially cooking family dinners with local agricultural products.