Grilled Peaches As summer is approaching, it is time once again to get outdoors and enjoy the nice weather. For many that means barbequeing. At the end of last summer, I posted some tips for grilling veggies and fruits which are chock full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals and important to a healthy diet. I want to share them again with you today. Happy Grilling!

Zucchini, eggplant, asparagus, pineapple, peaches, even apples are all great vegetables and fruit to try on the grill. 

Here are some tips to help get you started:

 Preparing for the grill-

Wash and dry fruit and vegetables to remove excess dirt.

For vegetables, trim away outer leaves or stems which may char on the grill and slice pieces on the angle (roughly half and inch thickness) to give a bigger surface area for fancy grill marks. For smaller items, clean and trim any bad parts, but keep generally whole.

For fruit, slice larger fruit much the same way as you might vegetables removing pits and trying keep slices with as much surface area as possible. Brush fruit and vegetables with a small amount of oil to reduce sticking.

Cooking on the grill-

Brush oil onto the grate before you place the food down. This action also keeps food from sticking.

Cook fruit and vegetables first. They take longer than meat items, so best to cook them first and have them waiting for the meat to arrive.

Place skinny items like asparagus on the grill on an angle or perpendicular to the grate to keep them from slipping through into the fire below. Or try a grill basket from your favorite housewares store which has smaller grates to keep the food inside.

Place items on the grill and leave them alone for a few minutes. Then turn roughly 90 degrees to get the nice cross hatch marks you see in restaurants. 

Keeping warm-

Have an oven safe dish or disposable foil tray to put the fruit and vegetables in when you take them off the grill and hold them in a warm (200 °F) oven until you are ready to serve.

Or start them on the grill to give them the lightly charred color and flavor and roast them in a 400 °F oven until fork tender.

Serving to your family and friends-

For vegetables, bring to room temperature. Add a small amount of extra virgin olivewalnut, or other flavorful oil, chopped herbs or nuts, and maybe a dash of your favorite vinegar (balsamic or other kind).

For fruit, serve them alone or with plain low fat yogurt and a touch of honey or simply a dollop of low fat whipped cream.

So, open your fridge, grab some fruit and vegetables and head outside to try on the grill. And don't forget to use ShopWell to make a list of your favorites to keep on hand this summer!