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Recipes, tips on grilling different produce

June 8, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
When it comes to a backyard barbeque, sizzling meat makes your mouth water, but it's not the only part of your dinner. Chef Eddy Rocq of Rocq Catering showed us how to fire up the fruits and vegetables.

"Keeping it on the healthy side. So you know we are going to go for fruit, vegetable, in season, is always better, always fresh- don't use frozen product," said Rocq.

With all that summer has to offer, it's a shame more don't share the sizzling surface with seasonal produce. Sturdy starches like potatoes and corn are common, but Rocq wanted to share simple, yet palatable, presentations with something different, such as veggie bundles.

"Wrapped bacon, for example, if you want vegetarian, we wrap it with leeks or with carrots. We do different variations and colors as well," said Rocq.

He also likes unusual vegetables, such as yucca, which is similar to potato in consistency. Baby squash with a bit of curry seasoning can really perk up a plate.

When using produce that's sliced thin and can easily fall through the grill, try a veggie grill pan, which he used for his tomato-eggplant-zucchini trio that is presented beautifully with a sprinkle of herbs.

Rocq blanches vegetables, which means you drop them in boiling water for only about a minute, and then plunge them into ice water to stop the cooking process.

When putting them on the grill, Rocq suggests cooking your meat first and then adding the produce when the protein is nearly done, with the exception of potatoes, which take a while to cook.

"It's very quick for the vegetable. So you cook it just a few minutes on each side pretty much," said Rocq.

For fruit like peaches, Rocq said 30 seconds on each side should do it. Make sure you place your produce in areas where the heat is indirect to keep it from burning.

If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water the night before or at least 30 minutes prior to use, so they don't burn while the food is cooking on the grill.

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