Use the grill to save money, make tasty meals
Save money and don’t heat up your kitchen–cook on the grill!
We have had lots of rain and now, heat, this summer (it seems like a sauna). And since most of us try to conserve energy and save money by using the air conditioner as little as possible, the thought of adding to the heat by starting the oven isn’t appealing.
Grilling is the answer. It keeps the house cooler, there are fewer dishes to wash and food from the grill tastes good.
Most of us think about grilling meat, poultry or fish, but have you considered grilling fruits and vegetables? As long as you have the grill going, why not give it a try? Fruits and vegetables both taste sweeter when cooked on the grill, and there is a slight smoky flavor.
Here are a few hints:
• Cut fruits and vegetables into sizes that won’t slip through a grill grate, purchase an inexpensive grill pan to protect foods or make a homemade version with a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil fashioned with a turned-up edge (to prevent food from rolling off the grill or into the coals).
• Cut vegetables into large, flat pieces of even thickness throughout each slice. You can cut them into smaller pieces after cooking.
• Allow grill surface to get hot (but not flaming) before placing raw foods, including fruits and vegetables on it. Grilling time will vary with the size of the cut fruits and vegetables. Two to three minutes per side may be all that it takes to grill fruits and vegetables.
• Brush fruits and vegetables lightly with cooking oil before placing them on the grill to enhance color and prevent sticking. Or, marinate vegetables for a few minutes in an oil-based Italian-style dressing to introduce Italian seasoning.
• You can also make a foil packet or “hobo pack” for cooking diced or chopped vegetables like zucchini or corn off the cob. The packs work well for soft and juicy vegetables like tomatoes.
Start with a large sheet of heavy duty foil. You could also double regular foil. Spray it with cooking spray before adding the vegetables. To create the packet bring together the short ends of the sheet, fold over to seal and then do the same with the sides. Cook over medium heat without turning. When unsealing the foil, watch for hot steam.
• To avoid cross-contamination, use separate tongs, plates or platters when grilling meats, hamburgers, hot dogs, poultry, fish, fruits and vegetables, or when toasting breads.
• Here are a few fruits and vegetables to consider grilling: potato, squash, onion, eggplant, asparagus, mushrooms, green pepper strips, thick-sliced or halved tomatoes, nectarines, peaches, pears, pineapple, and banana.
If you’d like more information, visit the Madison County Farmers’ Market at 8:30 a.m. to noon Aug. 3. The Madison County Extension staff and volunteers will be on hand to answer questions about grilling, food preservation, horticulture, Extension programming and Extension Homemakers. We will be passing out grilled food samples and some kitchen “freebies.” The market is in the Richmond Lowe’s parking lot. Hope to see you there.
Educational programs of the Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of race, color, sex, religion, disability or national origin.
Use the grill to save money, make tasty meals
- Lifestyles & Community
County’s oldest consignment sale begins today
The Little Ones’ Consignment Sale, Madison County’s oldest semi-annual sale of its kind, is open to the public 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. today (Friday) and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at the multi-ministry center behind United Methodist Church, West Main Street, Richmond. Marked items are half price on Saturday.
There’s more to do at the Village Trough
“I wish there was more to do here.”
Do you ever find yourself saying this sentence as you sit there bored out of your mind? Have you heard others ask it?
Well, there is something more to do now that Village Trough in Berea is staging shows with local and regional talent and preparing to open as a full dining and entertainment venue.
Let’s have a Mardi Gras party in Kentucky
It’s the time of year when the people in New Orleans celebrate a festival called Mardi Gras. Many states now do the same. Some call it “Fat Tuesday” which I have never understood till I went to New Orleans (five times) and saw all of the excitement for myself.
Beat the winter blues with meatballs
When it’s this cold outside it’s nice to warm up with some good comfort food.
I can think of few things more wonderful than the smell of simmering meatballs coming from the kitchen while I cuddle with my two young children, and a few good books, on a brisk winter day.
Taste test Thursday
The sun is shining, but the chill has returned, so I hope you made the most of the warm, sunny weather this weekend.
The spring greens are being as tentative as the warm temperatures, but there is talk of lettuce being harvested and a continued trickle of kale, pea shoots, miner’s lettuce and spinach. To make room for the spring harvests, winter squash and sweet potatoes have been marked down to $1/pound and pumpkins are only 50 cents/pound.
Buttercups in grazed pastures
One of the signs that spring has arrived is when the yellow flowers of buttercup begin to appear, but it’s during the winter months that the vegetative growth of buttercup takes place.
As a cool season weed, this plant often flourishes in overgrazed pasture fields with poor stands of desirable forages. In fact, many fields that have dense buttercup populations are fields heavily grazed by animals during the fall through the early spring months.
Make a difference this summer, volunteer at 4-H Camp
On June 30 more than 200 Madison County kids will load a bus headed for four days and three nights of fun at 4-H Summer Camp.
Campers will have a chance to hike, swim, dance and spend time learning about the environment, their friends and themselves.
And we need your help to make it possible!
A whole lot going on
Downtown Richmond Farmers Market opening
The new Downtown Richmond Farmers Market officially opens Saturday.
This market will set up in downtown Richmond on North First Street between Main and Irvine streets Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. (weather permitting).
For more details, go to www.downtownrichmndfarmersmarket.com. There you will find an events calendar and how to sign up for workshops that will be conducted at the market.
A Visit with a bell-The Dinner Bell Restaurant in Berea
I have wanted for some time to visit and interview people and food establishments here in Madison County and surrounding areas that you may have not gotten a chance to visit. \
I chose the Dinner Bell in Berea for my column this week.
Extension celebrates 100 years of nutrition education
For the past 100 years, families in Kentucky have looked to the Cooperative Extension Service to learn better ways to be healthy.
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