Grilled Vegetable Salad

Grilled vegetable salad

We have a grill! And we are so excited about it. We broke it in right away with steaks, peppers, asparagus, and corn on the cob. It was quite a feast. Since then we've grilled pork, potatoes (with which we made an amazing potato salad), chicken, and, of course, some hot dogs. For the most part, I've done the prepping and Jeff has done the grilling, but last week as he was heading out to a softball game, I fired up the grill to make a grilled vegetable salad for my friend and me to have for a little girls' night dinner.

I had some beautiful zucchini, an eggplant, and a bunch of cherry tomatoes that I thought would be perfect salad components (not to mention a gorgeous and enormous head of lettuce from the Roslindale farmers' market). I sliced the zucchini into thick planks, cut the eggplant into rounds, and placed the tomatoes on a piece of aluminum foil. I brushed all the vegetables with oil and seasoned them with salt and pepper and then got grilling.

I'm not the most confident griller yet, especially since we have a charcoal grill, which is proving to have a bit of a learning curve for us, but I simply did a medium-hot fire and grilled the zucchini and eggplant pieces on each side until they had nice char marks and left the tomatoes on until they were warm and starting to burst.

Grilling vegetables

Grilling vegetables

I brought the veggies inside and sliced the zucchini planks and quartered the eggplant rounds.

Grilled tomatoes

Grilled zucchini

Grilled eggplant

I made a simple balsamic dressing by whisking 6 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil into 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.

I tossed some lettuce and arugula with the dressing, topped the lettuce with the grilled vegetables and some crumbled goat cheese, and served the salads with extra balsamic dressing.

Grilled vegetable salad

Grilling the vegetables was pretty simple and added so much flavor to the salad. We loved the warm tomatoes and the soft, creamy goat cheese and found that the balsamic dressing had just the right notes to tie everything together.

We're already talking about making this again and what other vegetables we can add... maybe peppers, asparagus, and mushrooms will make an appearance in a future grilled vegetable salad.

What vegetables do you like grilled? And charcoal users, do you have any grilling tips for me?