Last Saturday, in case you missed my flurry of posts about it on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in The Home Depot’s Dallas Garden Party.
It was a great event for people new to gardening, grilling, or just wanting to get some additional tips and tricks to make their garden-to-table experience more successful. Mary Katherine Green of the Gardenieres was there, showing gardeners how to pot fresh herbs and answering all your garden questions.
Cassie Freeman of Hi Sugar Plum was hosting, and talked to all sorts of people, helping them through the party, decorating pots, taking photos, and learning. There were representatives from Southern Living that showed amazing decorating tips (I need them to come to my house and show me a few things!), someone from Fiskars showing some cool garden tools, and an expert helping me (and interested grillers) understand all the details of the Weber grill.
After all, I was using it to teach many happy eaters learn how to grill with their garden vegetables and herbs as they nibbled on samples of Chicken Yakatori, Grilled Carrots, and my recipe I developed just for this event – Grilled Yellow Squash with Basil and Feta.
It was a fun event filled with activity, and I had the opportunity to interact with some wonderful people. The caterers that executed the dishes, including mine, were talented and made me look amazing. I was most thankful for them.
An added bonus? I found out last week that I was to be taped in an interview with Jocelyn White of Designing DFW for an upcoming episode to air in May! So before the Garden Party, we talked about my recipe and the event. It’s my first TV experience, and I can’t wait to see it air. It was exciting and a bit nerve-wracking all at once!
I loved developing the recipe for this event. I’ve been more than ready to break out my grill all winter, and have already shared a grilled asparagus dish. And the summer isn’t even here yet, folks! The grill will certainly be earning its keep around here this season. It’s just so simple for me to grill many of our meals. There’s fewer dishes, it’s fast, and the flavor created by grilling is pretty awesome.
Here in the coming months, summer squash and zucchini will be everywhere. Gardens will be overrun. People will be making casseroles and breads galore. This is a simple, fresh, easy way to prepare squash that’s a little different than the norm. A few ingredients are whisked together to make a vinaigrette. The squash is tossed in the dressing, grilled, and then topped with basil and feta. The combination of flavors is an awesome mix of freshness from the basil, that lovely grill factor, a bit of tang from the mustard and lemon, and a salty note from the feta. It’s literally something you can cook in about 5 minutes, but can wow your guests. Even if those guests are just a few hungry teenagers or your spouse.
Grilled Yellow Summer Squash with Sweet Basil and Feta, created for The Home Depot Garden Party (gluten-free)
4 small-to-medium sized yellow summer squash
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh sweet basil
Preheat grill for medium-high heat.
To make the dressing, in a large bowl, whisk together the mustard, sugar, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Slice the squash lengthwise in half, and then lengthwise in half again. Place the slices of squash in the bowl with the dressing and toss to coat.
Remove squash from the dressing and grill over direct heat for a minute or two on each side or until grill marks appear and until the squash is just tender.
Remove and place on a plate. Drizzle remaining dressing over the squash. Season with additional salt and pepper as necessary, and sprinkle with feta and chopped basil.