... are a supremely versatile veggie, from the soup pan to the grill. In season during the coldest months of the year till the early spring, they are perfect for that first big barbecue of the year. Plus, they are a powerhouse of nutrients – ideal for staving off the early spring colds. “Place large leeks directly in the charcoal until the skin is charred all over,” advises Johnson. “Remove and place on a tray and leave for the residual heat to steam the inside of the leek. Peel all the outer charred layers away and you will be left with a beautifully steamed leek, soft and vibrant in colour. Delicious tossed in a Dijon mustard dressing.” The Weber Master-Touch Premium or Summit Charcoal are both perfect grills for this, with plenty of space in the charcoal to get the veggies crispy all over.
... are tasty both raw and boiled, but when cooked on the barbecue, their flavour soars. “Grilling vegetables adds a different taste and texture that you can’t replicate in your home kitchen,” explains Johnson, who teaches using Weber barbecues. “Plus the high, dry heat of the grill means you can generally cook vegetables a lot quicker which will help retain flavour.” Carrots peak in spring, are great energy boosters and their antioxidants are thought to help with cognitive abilities. Toss your carrots in a dressing of olive oil, cumin, paprika, and salt before you place them on the grill or into a Weber Grilling Basket. Once cooked top them with a squeeze of lime and a dollop of sour cream: a bit of spice and cool to counter the vegetables’ natural sugars.
... spears, stacked in rows of green or white on farmer’s market stalls, are like the calling card of the late spring months. Cooked correctly, these densely fibrous vegetables become crunchy, smooth and bursting with their own heady flavour. Seasoned sparingly, with just a bit of olive oil and a sprinkling of salt, asparagus are a beautiful side dish for grilled salmon or herby chicken. As Johnson explains: “It is the subtle seasonings in balance with each other that can elevate a dish from plain grilled vegetables to something delicious and stunning.”