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Grim's Grub: Let's taco bout a new way to grill

'Tis time to grill, and in honor of that most awesome summer pastime I've decided it is time for the obligatory grilling recipe column.

That being said, I don't want to repeat the grilled pizza, grilled cheese and grilled quesadilla recipes from last year, and I don't want to resort to the recipes that everyone knows. So I went to Facebook for ideas.

Ryan Nelson made suggestions of individual ingredients and the zucchini caught my eye. Attempting to figure out what I could make with grilled zucchini (diced!) I decided it's time for Grilled Tacos three ways. At least that's the way I imagined it. Then came the jicama taco shells, or the butterhead lettuce shells (leaves wrapped around toppings, no directions needed).

The point is, you're getting tacos, whether you like them or not. Let's just get down to business or we won't be able to fit everything. I'm going to focus on the main (usually meat) fillings. You take care of the remaining fillings.

Jicama Wraps

  • Jicama, small enough to slice on a mandolin (1-2 depending on number of tacos needed)
  • Oil of choice

Slice jicama into ¼-inch thick slices. Place onto a sheet pan and coat lightly with oil, then add to a hot grill, oil side down. Oil the top and flip once grill marks can be seen, remove once this side has light grill marks as well.

Grilled Steak

  • 1 ½ pounds steak (you can use other cuts, in reality)
  • Juice from 2 large limes
  • Zest of 1 large lime
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoons black pepper
  • 4 teaspoons taco seasoning

Marinate steak in lime juice for 30 minutes.

Rub both sides of the steak with the dry ingredients, pressing with your finger to help the rub adhere to the meat.

Grill on an oiled grate over high heat (or directly on lump charcoal like Ike Eisenhower). Cook 5 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill and allow to rest on a cutting board, covered for 10 minutes. Slice into strips against the grain.

Grilled Fish

  • 3 pounds firm, fleshed whitefish fillets
  • 2 teaspoons chilli powder
  • ½ teaspooon ground cumin
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 limes, quartered

Combine dry ingredients, garlic and oil in a bowl. Whisk into a paste. Rub the fish with the paste and allow it to marinate at least 30 minutes or up to four hours. Oil your grill and cook the fish over medium high heat. Grill until just cooked through. Either flake into coarse pieces or chop coarsely.

Once fish and fillings are in the middle of your wrap, squeeze a lime over the whole taco.

Grilled Veggies

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 6-inch zucchini, julienned into ½-inch sticks
  • ½ meaty tomato, thick sliced
  • 2 asparagus or broccoli spears (optional)
  • 2 green onions
  • ½ corn on the cob
  • 1 bell pepper, quartered and seeded
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 lime, halved
  • Sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • Pinch cilantro (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Cut the top off of the head of garlic, then drizzle in sesame oil and wrap in foil. Grill 30-45 minutes in a closed grill.

Mop all of these vegetables in enough sesame oil to coat them and then grill them in turn (denser, dryer veggies like zucchini may take longer). Dip oiled zucchini into grated Parmesan. Grill cut surfaces of tomato and zucchini until each flat side has grill marks and the vegetables are hot (but not mushy). Grill bell pepper and jalapeno, skin side down, until black lines appear. Grill onion and asparagus (or broccolini), turning to leave grill marks across all sides until hot and tender (but not mushy). Grill cut halves of lime.

Once all veggies are hot and have grill marks, cut the zucchini, asparagus or broccolini, and onion into half-inch lengths. Cube tomato, bell peppers and jalapeno into ½-inch cubes. Use a knife to cut corn off the cob.

Place all these vegetables into a bowl, squeeze garlic cloves out of papery skins, squeeze lime over the mix and add dry ingredients before mixing thoroughly, then serving.

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