Grilled vegetables with basil oil

A scrumptious selection of grilled Mediterranean vegetables from Giorgio Locatelli - a great dish to prepare with friends
By Giorgio Locatelli
Grilled vegetables with basil oil
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 2-4
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Prep Time: plus salting and 24 hrs infusing
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

Main:

  • 1 small aubergine
  • 1 bulb fennel, sliced lengthways
  • 1/2 celeriac
  • 1 red, yellow and green peppers
  • sunflower oil, for brushing
  • 1 heads radicchio, (radicchio trevisano if available)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large flat mushrooms, peeled, stalks removed
  • 2 tsp chopped parsley
  • 1 small clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 4-6 asparagus
  • leaves torn basil, to garnish
  • black pepper

For the basil oil:

  • 8 basil
  • 150 ml extra virgin olive oil

Method

1. Prepare the basil oil the day before you want to cook. Simply mix the basil leaves with olive oil in a screw-top jar. Don't keep the leaves in the oil for more than a week.

2. The morning before you want to cook, place the sliced courgette, aubergine, fennel and celeriac in a large colander. Sprinkle with salt and place a heavy weight on top. Leave in a cool place for 8-10 hours to drain excess liquid.

3. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4.

4. Place the peppers on a roasting tray and sprinkle with a little salt and sunflower oil. Roast for about 20 minutes, turning, until the skin starts to blister and go brown.

5. Place the peppers in a bowl and cover with cling film. Leave for 5 minutes then peel off the skin while the peppers are still warm. Remove the stems and seeds and cut the flesh into large slices. Put to one side.

6. Preheat a stove-top griddle pan over medium heat. Reduce the oven temperature to 170°C/gas 3.

7. Slice the radicchio in half lengthways. Season with salt and pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil. Place on the griddle for 5 minutes, turning once, Transfer to the roasting tray and finish cooking in the oven for another 5 minutes - don?t let it go crispy. Set aside at room temperature.

8. Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper, and brush with olive oil. Place on the griddle for 5 minutes, turning once. Place on the roasting tray and sprinkle with the parsley and garlic. Roast in the oven until tender. Set aside at room temperature.

9. Meanwhile, bring a saucepan of water to the boil. Add the asparagus and bring back to the boil. Immediately drain under cold running water. Pat dry and season with salt and pepper, and brush with olive oil. Place on the griddle for 3-5 minutes, turning, until tender. Set aside at room temperature.

10. Now cook the vegetables in the colander. Dry them on paper towels, then brush each slice with sunflower oil. Place on the griddle in batches and char-grill on both sides.

11. When all the vegetables are ready, arrange them attractively on a plate. Garnish with basil leaves and drizzle with basil oil. Serve immediately.

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