Fire up the barbecue! For meats and sides

The outdoor grill can be used for more than meats, Regina chef Aimee Shulhauser says.

Check out a recipe for ratatouille with goat cheese

Grilled beef steaks on the grill. (Shutterstock)

Fans of the outdoor barbecue often look to the weekend, especially long weekends, to grill a meal.

"There's a real hidden gem in the sides we can create on the barbecue," Aimee Shulhauser, a chef at Tangerine in Regina who also teaches, said. "Veggies ... not just in a foil packet."

She also suggested using a grill basket or simply placing vegetables directly on the grill.

"You can do so many things with your grilled veggies," she said.

Shulhauser also shared an outdoors recipe for ratatouille, using produce from a farmer's market.

"Get all this produce and grill them separately - it is labour intensive for sure - but all good things are," she said.

Grilled Ratatouille with Goat Cheese

Yield:  4 – 6 servings

  • 2 zucchini, cut into quarters lengthwise
  • 2 yellow squash, cut into quarters lengthwise
  • 2 small eggplants, unpeeled, sliced lengthwise, then cut in half
  • 2 red bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and quartered
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and quartered
  • 2 small red onions, quartered
  • 2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
  • Goat cheese, to serve

Preheat grill to medium-high. Place all cut vegetables (leaving out the tomatoes) into a large bowl.  Add the ½ cup of olive oil, and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.  Transfer the vegetables to a grill basket.

Place the vegetables on the grill and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, turning halfway through the cooking time. Add the cherry tomatoes, cover grill, and cook the remaining vegetables for 2 minutes, or until almost cooked through.

Transfer vegetables to a cutting board and coarsely chop (leave tomatoes whole). Place the chopped vegetables and tomatoes in a large bowl, add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil, garlic, oregano and parsley and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Top with crumbled goat cheese.  Serve at room temperature.

Shulhauser is also a fan of using barbecued food the next day.

"You have a spiced chicken breast the night before, and it's lovely, and then the next day it goes really well with peppers and onions in a tortilla shell, fantastic," she said.

With files from CBC's Saskatchewan Weekend