When I teach cooking classes I always try to cover a few grill techniques because I’m a huge grill fan. It’s such an easy, tasty, low-mess, healthy way to cook. What’s more, you can toss a few things on the grill at once and have dinner done in a flash.
Unfortunately I’ve found some women relegate grilling to the men in their life. (Not a bad move if you’re trying to get him to cook more while you’re expecting of course!) But others are needlessly intimidated by it. If you’re not a grilling gal (yet!) ask for a quick tutorial on how to light yours and I’ll give you easy recipes to make you a convert.
A fun technique to play with on the grill is cooking on wood planks. You’ll find them at most grocery stores in a variety of woods –they lend a delicate, smoky, BBQ flavor to foods. They work incredibly well for fish that can sometimes stick or fall apart on grill grates. The plank provides an even non-stick surface and even better; no flipping required. Your fish cooks up beautifully right on the plank, no babysitting required. Afraid you’ll start a mini-forest fire? Don’t be! A quick soak in water is all that’s required for prep.
This recipe is a favorite of mine. A simple spice rub gives rich salmon amazing BBQ flavor that pairs well with all your summer standards. I like to serve it with grilled veggies (cooked at the same time) and maybe some whole wheat couscous for an easy weeknight supper. Leftovers are delicious chilled on top of a mixed salad or tucked into a pita.
Lately I’ve been doing a lot of recipes using veggie skewers on the grill–pictured here are some of those adorable baby bell peppers (LOVE them) tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper, skewered, and grilled for ~5 mins per side. You could also try a pretty multi-colored mix of cherry tomatoes or cubed summer squash. Toss your veggie skewers on with the salmon and you’re done. How easy is that? Hopefully I convinced you to get your grill on too!
Don’t let mercury and PCBs scare you off all seafood. Cold water fish is one of the best sources of Omega 3’s–key to your baby’s brain development and a healthy pregnancy for you. Check out this great Fit Pregnancy write-up “The Dish on Fish” for the lowdown on what’s safe (like the Wild Alaskan Salmon I use here) and what to avoid.
Julie Hartigan left a career as an engineer/tech consultant to pursue her long-standing dream of attending culinary school. A fun loving person and natural born teacher, she loves her new career and sharing what she’s learned with others. Julie currently develops recipes, writes, and blogs about cooking, health, and entertaining for Weight Watchers, Bed Bath Beyond, and others. She teaches healthy cooking classes for adults and children, has been a personal chef, and has also worked at Saveur magazine and Food Network. Part gym rat, part party girl, her approach to cooking and life is finding the sweet spot: “Where Healthy Meets Happy”.
Julie lives in Hoboken, NJ with her two little girls, two chubby guinea pigs, and an extremely patient husband.