Vegetarians are (mostly) not here just to ruin your good time. Really. I swear. I was one, myself for seven years and all I wanted at a cookout was to hang out with my friends, and not have to worry that the omnivores would gobble up all the meat-free sides before I got to the table.
Here are a few of my favorite ways to celebrate the bounty of the season and make sure all my guests leave full and satisfied - no matter how they choose to chow down.
He says, "Get the freshest corn you can, peel, and grill them until the kernels are slightly charred and start to pop. Use a thick wooden skewer to create a handle for eating. Brush with some lime mayonnaise, generously dust with cotija cheese and finish with a little fresh chile piquin. Remove from heat, remove the skewers, sprinkle lightly with lemon juice if desired and serve."
More at our Grilled Corn 101 guide
If your guests don't eat cheese, just slice up the tomatoes, sprinkle with a little salt and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil. A good tomato needs no more embellishment than that.
Brush or spray the pods lightly with oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Your favorite barbecue rub will add an extra layer of flavor, as will powdered, okra-friendly spices like cumin, coriander, turmeric, paprika or cayenne pepper.
Heat the grill to medium, oil the grate and cook the skewers for 2-3 minutes, then flip over for an addition 2-3 minutes. The pods should be slightly crisp and pick up grill marks, but shouldn't be charred.
More in our okra grilling guide
Squash, Beans, Radishes, Cauliflower and other sturdy vegetables
Then I add halved strung beans and cauliflower florets (raw or lightly blanched in the potato water), chunks of raw squash and radishes, a few pinches of capers, and some ricotta salata cheese and a sliced, hard-boiled egg (if I know I'm not feeding vegans), mix them in and pour in a dressing that's equal parts lemon juice and olive oil. I add salt and pepper to taste and serve. This is one of those salads that actually improves the longer it sits in the fridge, but if you take that route, add the egg and cheese later.
3 lbs red potatoes
Quarter and boil the red potatoes for about 20 minutes, until tender to a fork or paring knife. Finely chop the celery, onion, scallions, and thyme leaves, and mix together with mayonnaise and mustard in large mixing bowl. Add salt, pepper and paprika.
He says, "Carefully break the mushrooms into large pieces, brush with the mojo de ajo and grill over medium heat. In a separate pan quickly sauté the sliced shallots and chilies. When the mushrooms are tender, add the peppers and onions and cook for a few minutes until the mushrooms are coated with the peppers and mojo de ajo."
"The mojo, like the dry rub for the steak, is easy to make and has so many different uses, so take a little extra time and make a big batch! Great with shrimp and fish also. To make it, simply mince garlic in a food processor, add to a pot, cover with olive oil, fresh chilies (I like to use chile de arbol), and cook slowly. When the garlic starts to caramelize, add some lime juice and the minced herbs. Cool and use on anything and everything."
Got a favorite way to keep your vegetarian guests fed at a cookout? Please share it in the comments below and we just might feature it in an upcoming feature.