IMPRESSIONIST VEGETABLES – ASTUCE: you may use any vegetable you like here, in any quantity you like, but small spring vegetables are best, and radishes, which keep their cheery color are essential. Sometimes I use baby turnips; if I can’t find spring onions, I use shallots; and occasionally I double the amount of asparagus. Also, if cilantro is hard to find, then use the finest extra-virgin olive oil all by itself. You’ll miss the vivid green color and the subtle flavor of the cilantro, but the dish will be delicious. Have fun!
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: tongs, grill pan, metal spatula, cheesecloth, sieve
PREPARATION TIME: 25 minutes
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: moderate – full-fat yogurt, olive oil, Fleur de sel or coarse sea salt, radishes (with greens, rinsed, root removed), small spring onions (trimmed, with 2-inches stem (or scallions)), stalks asparagus (trimmed, peeled halfway up from the root end), leaves spinach (or ramps, or other tender green), ½smoked paprika (or more if needed), Cilantro oil – optional (page xx), Fleur de sel, Place the yogurt in a sieve lined with cheesecloth one hour before you plan to serve this dish. Set the sieve over a bowl and reserve, at room temperature.; Build a medium-sized fire in the grill. While the coals are heating, pour the olive oil into a large, flat dish. Add a generous amount of salt, mix it with your fingers, then place all the vegetables except the greens in the oil and turn them until they are lightly covered with oil.; When the coals are red and dusted with ash, divide them in the barbecue, putting half the coals on either side. Set the grill over the coals. If you’ve got a perforated grill pan, place it on top of the grill, with half of it over the coals and the other half over the part of the barbecue without coals.; When the grill is hot, place the radishes, spring onions, and asparagus over the coals and leave them there just long enough until they are golden all over, turning them once. Depending on the heat of your grill and the vegetables, this can take from 2 to 4 minutes. When they’re golden on both sides, move them to the side of the grill away from the coals, cover the grill, and cook them until they are tender, which will take from 2 to 4 minutes. ; While the vegetables are grilling, place the green leaves in the remaining oil and salt, rub them so they are lightly covered with oil. ; Remove the vegetables from the grill, and place the spinach leaves on the grill above the coals. They will brown quickly, so turn them until they wilt and are golden to almost black, which will take just seconds. Remove them from the grill.; To serve, place a dollop of yogurt in the center of each of four plates. Sprinkle it liberally with smoked paprika. Arrange the vegetables around it. Drizzle some cilantro oil around the vegetables. Season with fleur de sel, and serve immediately.; – – Blog – Book – Featured – Life in France – Recipes – aspargus – France – olive oil – radishes – spinach – spring[/wpurp-searchable-recipe]