F&W Staff Favorite Summer Vegetable Recipes
Cherry Tomato Tart with Basil
This marble-like tart is as delicious as it is stunning.
Green Beans with Eggs, Chiles and Cilantro
This Georgian dish, called lobio (bean dish), is typically served cool, but with its buttery scrambled eggs and tender green beans, it's equally delicious hot. It's great as part of a family-style menu and also makes an unusually tasty, light main course.
Warm Grilled Corn with Pancetta and Red Pepper
This side dish has a great porky flavor from the pancetta, which gets simmered in water before frying to make it extra crisp.
Barley and Grilled-Vegetable Salad
A crunchy, delicious salad, this recipe gets its flavor from the grilled veggies.
Cheese-Stuffed Grilled Peppers
Wine experts Robert Perkins and John Lancaste love making this snack at backyard barbecues using all types of medium-sized peppers. As the peppers blister, the cheese mixture tucked inside turns warm and gooey.
Roasted Eggplant with Tomato Dressing
"This recipe is a very traditional one, and this is a common ingredient combination," says Ferit Sarper. He makes the dish especially appealing by serving the eggplant whole and then topping it with an incredibly light tomato vinaigrette.
Grilled Green Bean Salad with Lentil Vinaigrette
Most cooks boil, steam or sauté green beans, but grilling them—as Alex Seidel does here—gives them a delicious char that's superb with the lentils, pancetta and baked tomatoes in this salad.
Warm Summer Vegetable Salad with Brown Butter Dressing
In this exquisitely simple recipe, Gabriel Rucker brilliantly riffs on the classic combination of radish, butter and salt by tossing wedges of crunchy radish in a warm dressing made with brown butter (instead of oil) and Spanish Moscatel vinegar (which is golden and slightly bittersweet).
Roasted Zucchini with Ricotta and Mint
Flavored with fennel and cumin seeds, this quick side dish (or vegetarian main course) has a fun Indian flavor. While chef Sheamus Feeley likes to add pequin peppers, any chile flakes work well.
Kacie Loparto harvests seaweed along Maine's coast and sells it at farmers' markets and on her website. She especially loves wakame mixed with miso, ginger and cucumber.
Sugar Snap Peas with Soffrito, Hot Pepper and Mint
"It's hard to improve upon a perfect sugar snap pea," says chef Travis Lett. "The question for the chef is, how do you not screw it up?" Lett's answer is to keep things simple, by cooking the sweet peas with fresh mint, crushed red pepper and soffrito (an aromatic Italian mix of sautéed minced vegetables, usually used to flavor soups and sauces).
Summer Radishes with Chèvre, Nori and Smoked Salt
In this very simple appetizer, Jeremy Fox combines slivers of nori with bits of goat cheese—a clever, tantalizing mix of salty and creamy—then serves the dish with radishes and a sprinkle of smoked salt.
Adler & Fertig's Knife and Fork Grilled Vegetable Salad
Both residents of barbecue-mad Kansas City, Adler and Fertig are the authors of The BBQ Queens' Big Book of Barbecue. Even when they're grilling vegetables, as for this hearty salad drizzled with lemon vinaigrette, these BBQ Queens prefer using a gas grill with lots of power—at least 40,000 BTUs.
Zucchini Soup with Crème Fraîche
Winemaker Jeremy Seysses has developed a wide repertoire of dishes to use up the zucchini from his half-acre garden: ratatouille, sautéed zucchini, zucchini fritters, stuffed zucchini, zucchini cake. But this ultra-simple soup is the family favorite. His soup can be served warm, or chilled for a sunny evening. "Yes, we actually do get occasional sunny evenings in Burgundy," he reports.
Spicy Tomato-and-Watermelon Gazpacho with Crab
The Lees created this gazpacho as a riff on a recipe from The Virginia Housewife, a seminal Southern cookbook first published in 1824 that is still in print. They sweeten the cold tomato soup with watermelon and make it fiery with habanero and poblano chiles.
Grilled Squash Ribbons and Prosciutto with Mint Dressing
Grilling zucchini and summer squash ribbons on skewers is terrific because the edges become wonderfully charred and crisp, while the insides stay tender and juicy.