We use our outdoor grill pretty much the whole year, as even during the winter we’ll have nice breaks in the weather, with temps reaching the mid 60’s.  Grilling brings a glimpse  of summer into the kitchen, and that is a feeling any Brazilian-American always appreciate!

I found this recipe in a Food and Wine magazine, and the first thing that called my attention was the way it treated the squash:  thinly cut as ribbons, then threaded into skewers.  The photo in the magazine was quite gorgeous, evidently some practice is needed to cut the squash in the perfect thickness and grill them carefully enough to preserve a nice shape.  Let’s say my technique needs to be improved before serving this dish to guests…   But even if you don’t hit the jackpot with your technique, this is a fabulous side dish.  Don’t omit the prosciutto, it is a key component.

(adapted from Food and Wine magazine)

1 teaspoon lime zest
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped mint
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil + more for brushing veggies
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 medium zucchini, very thinly sliced lengthwise
2 medium yellow squash, very thinly sliced lengthwise
6 ounces sliced prosciutto

Prepare a gas or charcoal grill, brushing or spraying the grids with a little olive oil.  In a small bowl, combine the lime zest and juice with the mint, and the   olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.Alternately thread the zucchini, yellow squash and prosciutto onto 4 pairs of 12-inch bamboo or metal skewers (soak the bamboo skewers in water to prevent them from burning).  Lightly spray the vegetables and prosciutto with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.Grill the skewers over high heat until the zucchini and yellow squash are lightly charred, maximum of 2 minutes per side. Serve the mint dressing on the side (it is great for salads too).


to print the recipe, click here

Comments:   I suppose the same recipe would work without going through the trouble of making the ribbons, but they do add a lot of charm to the dish.  I wasn’t sure about grilling the prosciutto, as it is a bit dry to start with, but it turned out as a great match for the squash ribbons.  Salty and chewy, it gave that extra bite to the veggies, just like croutons on a Caesar salad. We both loved everything about this recipe, a real winner!

Food & Wine suggests using these veggies + dressing as a “sauce” for pasta.  Simply cook the pasta al dente, and slide the veggies off the skewers, mixing with the pasta while it’s still very hot. Add some of the dressing, adjust the consistency if needed with the pasta cooking water, and voila’:  heaven on a plate!

ONE YEAR AGO: Peppery Cashew Crunch
TWO YEARS AGO: Ossobuco Milanese (a GREAT dish!)

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19 thoughts on “GRILLING RIBBONS

  1. This will be nice in the summer when the squash starts rolling in — I love the idea of the mint dressing. No prosciutto for me though — I like pork products, but I’m fussy about combining them with other foods.


  2. I love the idea of the ribbon folded veggies, so much more elegant than endless chunky circles… I have filed that away for sunnier days. Wind howling down the British Isles today … brrrrr


  3. Sally, I love everything about this recipe! I agree, the prosciutto is a perfect match for your pretty veggie ribbons and the *mint*…. Ooh, la, la….gorgeous flavour addition! So simple and elegant too — love this…


    • That’s what I used, and indeed what the recipe called for, but I decided to skip that part in the method, as not everyone owes a mandolin. Still, I had a bit of trouble to judge what would be the perfect thickness for the slices. I imagine next time I make it I’ll get it right.


  4. I think your ribbons are gorgeous! And the prosciutto puts this over the top for me. I’ve been thinking about breaking the grill back out for Christmas. I’m hoping Mike will consider smoking something… 🙂


    • Kristy, we’ve been known to brush the snow off the top of the grill and turn it on… it does take a bit longer to get hot, but it’s a lot of fun to grill in the middle of a winter storm (well, not a huge one, but still… 😉


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