It’s grill season and everyone is looking to you, the guy (or gal) with that fancy new grill out back. More than likely you’re already planning on stocking up on all the backyard grill staples: chicken, burgers, steak, peppers, and any number of meats and veggies that everyone expects to see when they come to a BBQ.
If you’re a real trendsetter, you’ll want to grab some stuff from the store that will really wow your attendees. We have a tendency to stick to the tried and true barbecue methods that we’ve all seen at backyard blowouts for as long as we can remember, so I’m here to tell you to toss those hot dogs out the window and try out some of these alternative grilling options instead.
It’s probably one of the most hipster-ish, millennial things you could recommend to a person but we’re way past that now. If you’re still reading, you’re just as complicit in this as I am at this point, so here it goes: It’s time to start cooking your lettuce.
If you like grilled greens of any kind, you’ll probably really enjoy grilled romaine lettuce. Believe it or not, the heart or core of the vegetable is pretty thick. It absorbs juice and flavor easily, so cover that bad boy in salt, olive oil, and cracked pepper and let it sit on the grill for just a few minutes. Add it to other dishes or slide it on the plate as a side for your guests.
Asparagus is delicious and nutritious, it should already be a regular part of your diet. It’s high in fiber and all sorts of vitamins, and aside from making your urine smell kind of weird for a couple of trips to the bathroom, there are zero downsides to eating a bunch of asparaguses.
The keen trick I’m here to impart on you for grilling asparagus is running a couple of skewers through the top and bottom of a series of stalks. Grill it all together with a light simple seasoning and everyone will be into it, yourself included.
Do I really have to explain this? You probably haven’t thought about barbecuing bacon, because I hadn’t until recently. I won’t go into why you should be grilling bacon and adding it to your barbecue dishes, because I’m sure the second you read the word “bacon” your electrons started firing.
Avocado is an extremely healthy fat, and no one can figure out whether we should call it a fruit or a vegetable. Yes, we’ve all decided that scientifically it is a fruit, but if it walks, talks, and tastes like a vegetable, isn’t it a vegetable?
Now that your mind has been sparked with deep curiosity, I’d also like to run by you the fact that it holds up extremely well on the grill. Avocado is particularly dense, also absorbing smokey flavor exceptionally well.
I know, I know, but just hear me out. Extra firm tofu really works well on the grill, once you’ve marinated it and brushed it thoroughly with some delicious topical glaze. I’d strongly recommend a nice thick soy rub, the viscous sauce will soak up those savory flames and go really well with the romaine you also cooked up. Top it off with a staple like a steak or chicken and you’re doing great.
You wouldn’t think shell food would do so hot (get it?) on the grill, but you’d be wrong. Plop a bunch of oysters with the flat-side up and pour some garlic butter along with the top for a real barbecue treat.
I’ve just listed a few out of the box ideas for your backyard bonanza, but you can probably figure out some stuff on your own that I haven’t thought of. Anything that’s particularly firm, possibly even porous, will work over the charcoals, so don’t stress. Pick some stuff that you’ve personally never had at a barbecue and you’ll be sitting pretty.