This week Melissa and Sarah take their vegetarian lunch adventure to the grill! Woohoo! We've been meaning to grill all summer, but for some reason every time we pick a day it starts to rain. This time was no exception - rain was forecasted starting in the afternoon - but we decided to try and grill before it started, and we succeeded! Finally!
This flatbread had been kicking around in our minds for a while, the product of brainstorming, and I am so pleased with the way it turned out! Crispy grilled flatbread topped with pesto, grilled and fresh veggies, feta, and fresh basil - the epitome of Summer.
First, we made the flatbread dough - which is very easy and requires no yeast or rising time! Just flour, salt, baking powder, water, milk, and oil mixed together.
We separated the dough into four parts and rolled them into balls on a floured surface.
Then we prepped the veggies. We scraped the gills out of portabella mushrooms with a spoon to prevent them from releasing too much liquid. Then we sliced a bell pepper and a zucchini into long slices that would fit on the grill. Both sides of the veggies were spritzed with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper.
And onto the grill they went! Grill tips - once the grate is hot, clean it with a grill brush and either spritz with oil (what I do, be careful of flare ups!) or use tongs and a paper towel to oil it. This way you can be sure that nothing sticks! Just a few minutes per side and they should be done. I found that the mushrooms cooked the fastest, then the squash, then the pepper.
While I was grilling the veggies, Melissa was rolling out the dough into rustic oblong shapes (like naan). It was very easy to lay the dough onto the grill, and it began to bubble immediately.
I turned it over a little bit early from the first side, so that it would finish cooking when we put it back on later, but fully cooked the second side.
Oh my gosh - look at those beautifully charred bubbles! We spread the bubbled side with homemade pesto (see Melissa's recipe here), then topped it with the grilled veggies (we cut them into smaller slices first), fresh tomatoes, and feta cheese.
Then we put the whole thing back on the grill, just to keep everything warm and to finish cooking the bottom. Keep in mind that feta cheese will not melt, so please don't wait for that or you will burn your flatbread! After carefully removing the flatbread with two spatulas, we topped it with lots of fresh basil.
Ohmigosh, you guys - this was SO GOOD! The bread was crisp on the bottom and chewy on top, the vegetables had so much flavor, and the pesto and cheese pulled the whole thing together. Fresh, hearty, satisfying, beautiful, and messy - go make yourself some flatbread!
Grilled Vegetable Flatbread with Pesto and Feta
a Well Dined/Smells Like Brownies collaboration
crust adapted from Keepin’ It Kind
For the Dough:
2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup milk
2 tbsp olive oil
For the Toppings:
1 medium zucchini
1 medium red bell peppers
2 large portabella mushroom caps
salt and black pepper
1/2 cup pesto (storebought or homemade)
4 garden peach or campari tomatoes (or 2 larger tomatoes), sliced
1/2 cup crumbled feta
fresh torn basil
Heat the charcoals for the grill, spread evenly onto the bottom grate, then add the top grate and allow to get nice and hot. Keep in mind that cooking times will vary based on how hot your coals are.
Mix together all the ingredients for the dough using a wooden spoon. Divide into 4 equal parts. Knead each ball a few times, then roll out as flat as possible into oblong or circular shapes. Set aside.
Prep the veggies: Slice the zucchini into long strips. Clean the seeds and membranes out of the bell peppers and cut them into large pieces. Scrape the gills out of the portabella caps. Very lightly brush or spray the veggies with olive oil and season with salt and black pepper.
The grill should be very hot at this point. If necessary, brush or spray the grill grate with oil so the veggies don’t stick.
Grill the veggies until they release all their moisture (especially the mushrooms) and become tender and slightly blistered, at least 2 minutes per side. Remove the veggies from the heat.
Thinly slice the grilled mushrooms and peppers for topping the pizza. Set aside.
Cook the flatbreads on the grill for 1 minute, until bubbled all over on top, then flip and cook another 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Top the grilled flatbread, bubbly side up, with pesto, grilled veggies, tomatoes, and feta. Return to the grill for 1 minute, to warm the veggies and finish cooking the bread.
Carefully remove, sprinkle with basil, and eat warm.
One Year Ago - Pasta Salad with Smoked Gouda, Roasted Red Peppers, Fresh Tomatoes, and Grilled Artichoke Hearts
Two Years Ago - Summer Pizzas
Three Years Ago - Shrimp Tacos with Citrus Cabbage Slaw; Salmon Burgers with Tangy Avocado Sauce
Four Years Ago - Beet Risotto with Goat Cheese