As flexitarians, you might think we’d use less of a grill in the summer than those with a meat-centric diet. Au contraire – the grill is actually our cooking method of choice in the summer! (We may actually set a record for consecutive days of use.)
Our grill mania was further fueled this past week when we were gifted by a complete stranger with a beautiful charcoal grill (the highlight of our week, most definitely!). Long story, but suffice it to say, we were touched by his generosity and even more excited to experiment with our new favorite toy.
We’d been hearing about grilled romaine quite a bit lately, and thought we’d give it a whirl. At the outset, it might seem a bit strange (grilled…lettuce?), but somehow grilling this green brings out an unexpectedly beautiful smoky flavor. I’m not quite sure how to describe it, but it is hands down one of the best things I’ve tasted lately.
With a little freshly grated Parmesan, this is the perfect easy way to start a summer meal al fresco. We served it alongside pasta recently and it was an excellent compliment. Give it a try – and experience the magic of grilled salad!
Serves 4 as an appetizer or side
What You Need
2 heads of romaine lettuce (or packaged romaine hearts)
Fresh ground pepper
Balsamic vinegar, if desired
What To Do
1 Preheat a grill. (If you don’t have a grill, you also can use a stovetop grill pan; in that case, skip this step.)
2 Wash and dry the romaine. If using romaine heads, remove a few of the outer-most leaves and save the greens for a salad.
3 Cut each romaine heart in half lengthwise. Drizzle each side liberally with olive oil, a good amount of kosher salt, and fresh ground pepper. If desired, drizzle with balsamic vinegar.
4 Place the romaine hearts on the grill, and grill for about 3 minutes on each side, until slightly charred.
5 Top with grated parmesan cheese and serve immediately.