One of the best parts of summer in the Pacific Northwest is grabbing friends and family and lighting up the grill to barbecue. While enjoying the sun, good company, and great food, it is important to keep food safety on your mind too. Certified nutritionist Deborah Enos shares tips and tricks about the dangers of cooking with lighter fluid, picnic food safety, how to clean your BBQ grill, and vegetarian recipes for your grill.

Deborah Enos: BBQ Fans

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In the summer, I usually use:

• Zucchini

• Asparagus

• Radishes (try them, so good!)

• Bell peppers

• Snap peas

I drizzle the veggies with avocado oil (avocado oil has a higher smoke point for grilling) and add salt & pepper to taste. You can get very creative with your seasonings and add in chili powder or curry. I will share my "secret" flavoring weapon, Green Magic Seasoning from Market Spice in Pike's Place (see the link below to Market Spice). A little seasoning goes a long way so go easy-you can always add more after cooking.

I turn my grill to high and place my basket on the grill. Once the grill is hot,I turn the heat to medium and toss my veggies into the basket. I prefer my veggies to still be a bit firm, so keep an eye on the grilling time. Mine are usually ready in less than 8 minutes.

Once the veggies are cooked, I pour them out onto a try, let me cool for about 5 minutes and then I toss them with my vinaigrette.

To increase the protein content add in toasted nuts or pumpkin seeds and a little feta cheese.


3 smashed garlic cloves (I use the already peeled Christopher Ranch garlic)

3/4 cup of olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon (adds flavor without calories)

1/4 to 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar (I use the Costco Kirkland signature brand)

1 Tbs of Dijon mustard

salt & pepper to your liking

I smash the garlic on a cutting board and toss it into a bowl. I add the remainder of the ingredients to the blender bottle (or bowl) and whisk, whisk, whisk! This will blend the flavors and make it taste great. Too tart? You can add a touch more oil or even some very mashed avocado.