I love food cooked on a barbecue grill. I often find myself searching for recipes that can be cooked on a grill. As the summer outdoor cooking season proceeds I contemplate my favorite recipes. However, a minor detail crosses my mind. I have never cooked on a grill. You may think living in New York City has something to do with this lack of experience. Although that is a huge limitation, it is not the real explanation. Cooking on a barbecue grill is the honor reserved for my father. For as long as I can remember my father is the one in charge of manning and operating the grill. My father takes great pride in his skill on the BBQ and if you’ve had the luxury of trying his food you would agree.
There is something special about the food my father cooks and it is not because of the tasty end result. It is all the preparation and love that goes into his burgers and barbecued chicken. He is always open to new suggestions and takes his cooking seriously. His delight is the enjoyment of those partaking in his creations. My father learned his outstanding grilling skills from his father, Morris. My Pop Pop Morris took great pride in his duties at the grill as well. For my father and grandfather, it begins with their careful maintenance of their barbecue grills. I vividly recall the renewal of spring, with trees in bloom, birds chirping, and glorious sunshine. My father would set aside an afternoon to work on his grill, thoroughly cleaning it, so it was meticulous and prepared for the first barbecue of the season. His attention and maintenance sets the tone for the cooking. Serious, thorough and ultimately delicious!
All recipes say it is important for the outcome in the cooking process to start with a clean surface. There are even new studies stating the charred remnants remaining on a grill surface can actually have carcinogenic effects.
Some of my best summer memories center around the barbecue dinner. But as I reflect on all the wonderful meals my father has prepared, I realize it is not about the food, it is the joy of sharing this special time with family and friends that somehow makes every barbeque special.
After all, who doesn’t love a barbecue?
Grilled Vegetables Recipe
- 2 large zucchini, sliced into rounds (or into thin strips)
- 2 sweet onions
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat grill on high.
- Slice zucchini into rounds or thin strips. Remove the outer layer of each onion and trim off the top. Slice the onion down the middle to create two equal halves. Cut each half into thirds to create six wedges total.
- In a large dish, toss zucchini and onions with olive oil, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Once grill is hot, use tongs to place zucchini and bell peppers on grill.
- Cover and cook for 5-8 minutes. Flip and continue cooking on high for another 5-8 minutes depending how well done you want your vegetables to be cooked.