I love summer and what I love more is when my wife and I are in Italy enjoying the sun and the beautiful produce of the regions.
Tonight, having craved that fresh summer feel, I was inspired to create a dish with fresh Mediterranean flavors, utilizing a grilling pan, combining it with the nuttiness of middle eastern grains. I wanted to use the BBQ but we are having quite a rain shower tonight which is strange for our area, so it looks like I have to improvise and stay indoors.
In all our recipes we like to use an authentic extra virgin cold pressed olive oil from Italy. Usually you will see a D.O.P. acronym on the bottle, which means: Denominazione di Origine Protetta, Appellation of Protected Origin. All D.O.P. products are guaranteed to be made in a specific area, from raw ingredients that needs to be grown in that determined area, to all the steps of the production. In the case of extra virgin olive oil, it means that it is made with olives coming from a limited area that didn't have to travel long distances to get to the olive mill.
- 1 cup of mixed grains: quinoa, oats, millet, amaranth, konawa.
- 2 cups water
- ½ red pepper
- ½ yellow pepper
- ½ onion
- ½ cup crimini mushrooms
- 3 green onions
- ½ small eggplant
- 8 regular tiger prawns
- 1 small tomato
- 4 leaves of iceberg lettuce
- extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon basil paste
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ¼ cup of fresh parsley
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 lemon
- Peel, devein and wash the prawns, then dry.
- Place prawns in a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Mix in ½ teaspoon basil paste, ½ teaspoon oregano, minced garlic clove, salt, pepper, 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Mix well and set aside.
- Cut zucchini, eggplant, red and yellow peppers, onions, and mushrooms into about ⅛ inch lengthwise slices. Toss with a drizzle of olive oil.
- Heat grilling pan on high heat till hot, then lower heat a bit.
- Grill vegetables separately starting with eggplant, then zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, and last onions.
- Place grilled vegetables in a bowl. Blend with salt, pepper, basil paste, oregano and garlic and a drizzle of olive oil. Set aside.
- Put prawns in a grilling pan. While this is cooking, start cooking the grains.
- Turn prawns after a few minute to ensure they are cooked throughout.
- In a pot bring water to boil and salt to taste. If you want you could use vegetable stock or stock of your choice. Add 1 cup grain combination. Bring to a boil 15 to 20 minutes, covered with a lid, until water is dissipated.
- Take off heat and let stand 3 minutes. Take lid off and with a fork fluff the grains.
- In a sauté pan heat olive oil, add chopped green onion. Put cooked grain in and toss grilled vegetables.
- Dice tomato, and place in a bowl. Add olive oil, salt, pepper, basil.
- On a plate place grains top with a leaf of iceberg lettuce and diced tomatoes. Place 2 grilled prawns on top of tomatoes and drizzle olive oil.
- Serving Size: 4 portions