Grilled Vegetable Vinaigrette

Makes 2 cups.

Note: This is a chunky dressing that makes each bite of a salad taste different. The dressing is also good spooned over a steak and sprinkled with crumbled blue cheese, or dolloped onto a lamb chop with some feta. From "A Girl and Her Greens," by April Bloomfield.

• 1 medium fennel bulb, outer layer, stalks and fronds removed, root end trimmed of brown bits

• 1 small red onion (about 1/4 lb.), cut into 1/2-in. thick rounds

• 1 small head radicchio (outermost leaves removed, bottom trimmed of brown bits, quartered lengthwise) and cut into 1/2-inch thick wedges

• 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• 3 tbsp. sherry vinegar

• 1 tsp. Maldon or another flaky sea salt

• 1 small garlic clove, very finely chopped

• A five-finger pinch of fresh mint leaves

• A five-finger pinch of fresh marjoram leaves


Halve the fennel bulb lengthwise and cut each halfway through the root nub (so the wedges stay intact) into about 1-inch-thick wedges.

Heat a grill or heavy grill pan over high heat until it's good and hot, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add fennel, onion and radicchio. Cook, turning vegetables over occasionally, until fennel and onion are lightly charred in spots and cooked through, but still have a little bite, about 20 minutes. The radicchio is done when the stems are tender but still have a little bite, the leaves are wilty, the tips crackly, about 15 to 20 minutes.

As they finish, pop the grilled vegetables into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap until they've cooled fully. They'll steam a bit and cook some more as they cool. Once they've all cooled, chop the vegetables into a mix of about 1/2-inch pieces, some smaller and some larger.

Pop the vegetables back into the bowl, add the oil, vinegar, salt and garlic, and stir really well. Toss the mint and marjoram together on a cutting board, give them a rough chop and stir them into the dressing.

Nutrition information per serving of 2 tablespoons:

Calories68Fat7 gSodium160 mg

Carbohydrates2 gSaturated fat1 gCalcium10 mg

Protein0 gCholesterol0 mgDietary fiber1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1½ fat.

Grilled Red and Savoy Cabbage with Roquefort and Celery Seed Dressing

Serves 8.

Note: Grilled wedges of red and green cabbage taste incredible. If you love Roquefort cheese, add more as you like. If you don't care for Roquefort (heaven forbid), skip the cheese or substitute a French feta. Napa cabbage is a delicious substitute for either of the cabbages. From "BBQ Bistro," by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig.

• 3⁄4 c. vegetable oil

• 1⁄3 c. cider vinegar

• 2 tbsp. sugar

• 1 tsp. celery seeds

• 1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt

• 1⁄2 tsp. ground white pepper

• 1⁄4 tsp. dry mustard

• 2 garlic cloves, minced

• 1 small head red cabbage, quartered lengthwise

• 1 small head savoy cabbage, quartered lengthwise

• Olive oil for brushing

• Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground pepper

• 8 oz. Roquefort cheese, crumbled


For the Celery Seed Dressing: In a bowl, combine the vegetable oil, vinegar, sugar, celery seeds, salt, pepper, mustard and garlic; whisk to blend. Set aside.

For the vegetables: Prepare a medium-hot fire in your grill. Brush the cut sides of the cabbages with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Grill on the cut sides of the cabbage, turning once, until browned with good grill marks and warm and supple in the middle, about 5 minutes per side. Place cabbages on a platter and drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with cheese.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories366Fat29 gSodium580 mg

Carbohydrates21 gSaturated fat8 gCalcium250 mg

Protein11 gCholesterol21 mgDietary fiber7 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 3 vegetable, ½ other carb, 1 high-fat meat, 4 fat.

Grilled Cauliflower Paillards with Orange-Olive Pistou

Serves 2 to 3.

Note: One large cauliflower will yield about six (1-inch) paillards, with two of the slices being the end pieces. Cut only part of the core, because if you remove too much, the paillard will fall apart. From "BBQ Bistro," by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig.

• 1⁄4 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• Juice of 1 lemon

• 2 oranges (14 oz. total), peeled, segmented and coarsely chopped

• 1⁄2 c. green olives (such as Manzanilla or Picholine), pitted and coarsely chopped

• 1⁄4 c. golden raisins

• 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

• 2 tbsp. coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

• Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 1 large head (21⁄2 lb.) cauliflower, part of core and green leaves removed

• Olive oil for brushing

• Kosher or sea salt


Prepare an indirect medium-hot fire in your grill.

For the Orange-Olive Pistou: Stir the olive oil, lemon juice, orange segments, olives, raisins, garlic and parsley together in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

For the cauliflower: Cut the cauliflower from top to bottom into 1-inch-thick (2.5 cm) slices and place on a baking sheet. Brush the cauliflower with olive oil and salt to taste. Place the cauliflower slices over the hot fire and grill for 2 minutes per side to get good grill marks, then move to the indirect or no-heat side of the grill. Close the lid and grill-roast for another 10 minutes, until the cauliflower slices still hold together but are tender when pierced with a fork.

To serve, overlap the cauliflower slices on a platter and spoon the Orange-Olive Pistou down the center.

Nutrition information per serving of 3:

Calories336Fat23 gSodium460 mg

Carbohydrates34 gSaturated fat3 gCalcium110 mg

Protein6 gCholesterol0 mgDietary fiber8 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 vegetable, 1½ fruit, 4½ fat.

Bourbon-Brined Center-Cut Pork Chops

Serves 4.

Note: Cabin Still is a great cooking bourbon, but you can use the cheapest bottle you'd be willing to drink. From "Feeding the Fire," by Joe Carroll and Nick Fauchald.

• 1 gallon water

• 1 c. kosher salt

• 1 c. packed dark brown sugar

• 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced

• 1 head garlic, halved horizontally

• 2 bay leaves

• 1 cinnamon stick (Mexican is particularly good)

• 1 tbsp. black peppercorns

• 1 tbsp. allspice berries

• 1 tbsp. whole cloves

• 3/4 c. olive oil

• 1 1/2 c. bourbon plus 1 tbsp., divided

• 4 bone-in center- cut pork chops (10 to 12 oz. each), about 1 1/2 in. thick

• 4 tbsp. unsalted butter

• Coarse sea salt


In a large pot, combine 1 gallon water, kosher salt, brown sugar, onion, garlic, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, black peppercorns, allspice berries, cloves and olive oil. Bring to a boil. Turn off heat and stir in 1 1/2 cups bourbon. Let cool to room temperature, then transfer to a nonreactive container and refrigerate until cold.

Put pork chops in cold brine and refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours.

Remove pork chops from brine and pat dry with paper towels; discard brine.

Prepare a two-stage fire with medium and hot sides in a grill, making sure to oil the grill grates well.

Grill the pork chops over high heat until well charred on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Then move the pork chops to the medum-heat side and grill, turning every few minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into the center of the chops reads 145 degrees, 12 to 15 minutes longer. Transfer the pork to a platter and let rest for 5 minutes.

While pork chops rest, in a small skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Remove pan from heat and add 1 tablespoon bourbon. Return to heat and tilt the pan away from you until the alcohol ignites (use a match or a lighter if using an electric stove). Let alcohol burn off, then swirl the sauce until emulsified.

Transfer the pork chops to plates and spoon some of the sauce over each chop. Sprinkle with coarse salt and serve.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories640Fat38 gSodium2700 mg

Carbohydrates5 gSaturated fat16 gCalcium25 mg

Protein62 gCholesterol210 mgDietary fiber0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: ½ other carb, 9 lean meat, 2 fat.

Spicy Black-Pepper Coated Drumsticks

Serves 6.

Note: Think of these as Italian Buffalo wings, with fennel sticks subbing for the traditional celery. From "Italian Grill," by Mario Batali.

• 12 chicken drumsticks

• Kosher salt

• 1/2 c. buttermilk

• 2 tbsp. hot sauce, preferably chipotle

•1 tbsp. fennel seeds, lightly crushed in a spice or coffee grinder

• 2 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 2 fennel bulbs

• 4 oz. Gorgonzola dolce (a softer version of the Italian blue cheese)

• 1/4 c. red wine vinegar

• 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place drumsticks on a baking sheet and season all over with salt. Bake for 20 minutes (25 minutes for very large drumsticks).

In medium bowl, stir together buttermilk, hot sauce, fennel seeds and pepper. Set a wire rack over a small baking sheet.

As soon as the drumsticks come out of the oven, toss them, in batches, into the buttermilk and turn to coat, then place skin side up on the rack to drain. Spoon a little of the mixture, with fennel seeds and pepper, over each one, and set aside. (The drumsticks can be baked and marinated up to a day ahead; leave them on the rack, cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before grilling.)

Preheat gas grill or prepare fire in a charcoal grill.

Trim fennel bulbs, cut lengthwise in half, and cut out the core. Cut into 1/4-inch-wide sticks and toss into a bowl of ice water.

Crumble Gorgonzola into a small bowl and mash with a fork. Add the vinegar and stir until fairly smooth. Drizzle in oil, stirring. Pour into shallow bowls for dipping.

Place drumsticks on the hottest part of the grill, cover the grill, and cook, turning occasionally at first and then more often as they start to caramelize, until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

Put drumsticks on a platter. Drain the fennel sticks, pat dry and place next to the wings. Serve with the Gorgonzola dressing.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories500Fat35 gSodium500 mg

Carbohydrates8 gSaturated fat9 gCalcium180 mg

Protein37 gCholesterol170 mgDietary fiber3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 5 medium-fat meat, 2 fat.

Chili and Cumin Marinated Hanger Steak

Serves 4.

Note: To toast cumin seeds, place in a dry pan over medium heat and warm until fragrant. This will make about 3/4 cup marinade, more than you will need for this single dish. From "Brazilian Barbecue & Beyond," by David Ponté, Jamie Barber and Lizzy Barber.

• 3 oz. red chiles, seeded and roughly chopped

• 5 to 6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

• 3 tbsp. mirin (Japanese rice wine)

• 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar

• 2 tsp. sea salt

• 1 heaping teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted (see Note)

• 1/2 tsp. dried oregano

• 1/4 c. light olive or sunflower oil

• 4 (7-oz.) hanger steaks

• Olive oil, for brushing

• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a small food processor, combine chiles, garlic, mirin, vinegar, 2 teaspoons sea salt, toasted cumin seeds, oregano and 1/4 cup oil. Blend to a smooth, wet paste. (Use immediately or refrigerate up to a week.)

Put the steaks in a large bowl and toss with 4 tablespoons marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight.

Half an hour before you are ready to cook, take the steaks out of the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature. Light the grill and let the flames die down before starting to cook. If cooking indoors, heat a griddle pan until very hot. Scrape the marinade off the steaks and pat dry with paper towels. Brush them with a little olive oil, season lightly with salt and pepper, then grill them for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, or until cooked to medium-rare. They should feel a little springy when pressed. Remove from the heat and brush with a little of the unused (fresh) marinade). Let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories405Fat21 gSodium660 mg

Carbohydrates2 gSaturated fat6 gCalcium29 mg

Protein48 gCholesterol140 mgDietary fiber0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 7 lean meat