The Memory of Grilling
David and I cooked this meal before I went on my family vacation last week. Free Blogging tip : Write stuff as it happens. A week of vacation is a lot of new memories.
We’ve had a great early spring here in Minnesota so our meal this time had to be on the Grill. It was David’s turn to host so he got the main course, which was some awesome kabobs with chicken, grilled veggies, and chunks of salmon. I’ll let him tell you about those recipes, but suffice it to say they were all delicious. David’s grilled veggies are what I have set the bar at for vegetables on the grill. He marinades them in oil and spices ahead of time and now I don’t believe there is any other way they should be grilled.
I knew that I wanted to put something on the grill too and I thought about adding some more protein to the meal with some ribs, but I started reading the chapter on Grilling in Ruhlman’s Twenty and found a recipe for Grilled Pear Salad with Honey-Walnut Vinaigrette. Grilling pears didn’t have quite the draw of ribs, but it would balance out the meal a little better as well as be something new. Ruhlman is a pretty die-hard charcoal grill man, but I don’t think I will ever give up the convenience of a gas grill. Planning a meal or even a recipe is enough work already without having to spend time getting the coals just right. I know that makes me a bit of a grilling heathen, but it’s my opinion.
I quartered the pears and rubbed them with a little bit of canola oil before I put them on the grill. The recipe was very non-specific about how long to grill the pears and said to cook them until they are “nicely marked on the cut sides and are tender.” The pears I had were of varying ripeness and the firmer pears took much longer to grill than I would have expected. When I plated the salads I tried to make sure everyone got some of the more ripe pear as this had the best flavor.
The Honey-Walnut Vinaigrette was tasty, but there needed to be more. The recipe calls for drizzling the dressing over the pears, but I had used to much while mixing the salad. The end result was pretty good and grilling pears was definitely something different. Maybe next time I’ll try melon.