Bell peppers, eggplant and zucchini are all at their best in summer, which makes this dish a great choice for a meatless dinner on the summer solstice. Here the vegetables are simply grilled, then tossed with a
vibrant mustard vinaigrette. Blue cheese and walnuts add richness, while chickpeas add protein to this hearty salad. Choose quick-cooking bulgur to keep the preparation time manageable on a weeknight. Grilling the vegetables keeps the kitchen cool in the summer, but broiling them works just as well.
Tangy Summer Vegetable Salad with Bulgur
1 1/2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
3 Tbs. sherry vinegar
1 large shallot, minced
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
3 Tbs. fresh flat-leaf parsley, minced, plus torn leaves for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 can (15 oz./470 g), chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 cup (6 oz./185 g) bulgur wheat
2 red bell peppers, quartered lengthwise
2 yellow bell peppers, quartered lengthwise
3 Asian eggplants, cut lengthwise into thirds
3 zucchini, cut lengthwise into thirds
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) blue cheese, crumbled
Coarsely chopped walnuts for garnish
Prepare a hot fire in a grill.
In a small bowl, stir together the mustard, vinegar and shallot. Gradually whisk in 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) of the oil. Add the minced parsley. Season the vinaigrette to taste with salt and pepper. In a large bowl, combine the chickpeas and half of the vinaigrette. Stir to coat. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
In a medium saucepan, combine the bulgur and 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) cold water. Season lightly with salt. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer until the bulgur is just
tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the bulgur stand, covered, for at least 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, brush the peppers, eggplants and zucchini with olive oil, and then sprinkle with salt and
pepper. Arrange the vegetables on the grill rack, cover and cook until brown in spots, about 7 minutes per side. Transfer the vegetables to a cutting board, cut crosswise into thirds, and then slice lengthwise.
Transfer to the bowl with the chickpeas. Add enough vinaigrette to season to taste and toss to coat.
Fluff the bulgur with a fork, and then spoon into a large shallow bowl. Top with the vegetables. Sprinkle with the cheese, walnuts and a few parsley leaves and serve hot or at room temperature. Serves 4.
Find more simple, seasonal weeknight recipes in our cookbook Weeknight Fresh + Fast, by Kristine Kidd.