I wouldn’t be the first to notice that vegetarians get short-changed during BBQ season. A slew of salads may be great but what about some BBQ action that goes beyond pieces of marinated veggies (especially when marinades slide right off)?
Last weekend, some outdoor grilling was in the cards and my father in-law is a vegetarian. Whilst we would be grilling chicken kebabs and plunging them in to refreshing yoghurt sauces, it was only fair that he should be able to do the same. I made him a vegetable kebab using some grated potatoes, cauliflower, red lentils and peas. With my free hand, in went a load of ginger, fresh chili and ground coriander seeds. I shaped them like sausage links, brushed them with oil and threw them on the BBQ. The kebabs were crusty and golden on the outside and firm and crunchy on the inside – which was important because all too often, the mixture is too loose and falls apart in your hands.
My only faux-pas last weekend was not making enough mixture. How was I to know that the meat eaters would want them too?
Recipe for Veggie Kebabs
2 large russet potatoes, cooked until tender, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon grated ginger
1 tablespoon red lentils, soaked for 30 minutes
½ onion, finely diced and left to drain on paper towels
2 tablespoon breadcrumbs
2 tablespoon peas, cooked and drained
1 cup cauliflower, grated
½ teaspoon coriander powder
1 jalapeño, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)
2 tbsp. chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper to taste
1) Line part of the grill with foil where you will be cooking the vegetable kebabs
2) Combine all the ingredients and, refrigerate mixture until cool
3) Make breakfast sausage type links
4) Brush with oil on all sides. Set them on the foil and allow to brown on all sides
Saira Malhotra, is of British–Indian descent and is a chef, food writer and cooking instructor based in New York City. Raised in Hounslow, U.K, or rather ‘Little India’, where the air is aromatic with roasted spices, little did Saira know these moments would follow her from being a student in France and Italy to residing in NYC with her husband and kids and parlay themselves unexpectedly in to a culinary career. She is a graduate of the International Culinary Center in New York City. Come visit her at her food blog: www.passportpantry.com where she shares approachable and international recipes