Grilled Summer Vegetables and Shrimp Marinara Cocktail Recipe

Being a self proclaimed foody, I’d have to say my favorite thing about Summer is cooking on the grill. Well, that and using the hose to clean up my toddler when she gets dirty, but that’s not what I want to talk about today. Today, I want to bask in the glory of the grill. I think I’ve said it before, but I will say it again. There is just something about food that is cooked over a fire, (the way nature intended) that just makes it… perfect! It seems to enhance the natural flavors of whatever is cooking on it, and adds a little hint of smokiness. You don’t even need to add seasoning. That’s what makes the grill so great! With this in mind, and two drawers full of fresh produce, I decided I needed to grill today. Looking at all of those luscious fruits and savory vegetables, I had to grill today.

It was so simple and easy. I fired up the grill, sliced some zucchini, yellow squash and a nectarine. I tossed the veggies in some olive oil and balsamic vinegar, (Although in retrospect, i think lemon juice would have complimented the dish better, but I didn’t really have a plan yet.) seasoned them with a little sea salt and fresh cracked pepper, then threw the veggies and nectarine on the grill over Med-Low heat (~300 degrees F)

Mmmmm, look at those great grill marks!

Next I hit the freezer for some protein where I conveniently found a bag of precooked shrimp. I remembered the left over marinara sauce from last nights dinner, and it gave me a great idea. I threw the shrimp in a colander to defrost under cold running water, then grabbed my ingredients for my “Marinara Cocktail Sauce.” Starting with about a cup of leftover Marinara Sauce, I added 3 TBLS ketchup, a dash of Tobasco Sauce, 1 tsp prepared horseradish (not horsey sauce, that has mayonnaise in it) and a TBLS Worcestershire Sauce, then mixed it all up. (If it is too spicy or not tangy enough, add a little more ketchup.)

I returned to the grill and flipped everything over. Once the veggies were cooked through and the nectarine had softened a little I removed them from the grill. (Note: the nectarine took less time to cook than the vegetables.)

Finally, I squeezed a lemon wedge over my shrimp and topped it with big spoonfuls of the chunky marinara cocktail sauce, then served it next to the warm grilled veggies for lunch.

Then for dessert, I drizzled vanilla yogurt over the cooled nectarines and sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. Can we say YUMMMM-Y?! It was delightful. Healthy, yet satisfying. Thank you, my dear grill, thank you.

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